Airline Industry Accounts for 2% of Global Warming, CO2 Emissions

I’m attending a forum on IT Government Leadership learning about the NextGen program from the FAA. This billion dollar program is modernizing our airline transportation through GPS, weather forecasting, digitizing the analog, and much much more.

The environmental impact of this program primarily concerns fuel use. Doing so though updating and simplifying flight routes, allowing for glide paths to landings (instead of stop-n-go). The net benefit should mean lower fuel costs for airlines, maybe lower ticket prices, and definitely less fuel use. This picture highlights the expected fuel and time savings of the program:

Environmental Impact of NextGen FAA Airline Modernization Program

The NextGen program takes their commitment to the environment one step further focusing on expected growth and global warming.

“The net system-wide effect cannot be offset by increased growth. Additional measures are needed, and we are aggressively pursuing these measures under NextGen.”

This means quieter and cleaner aircraft using clean energy and a portfolio program “to mature and accelerate promising new technologies”. They are also partnering with the ICAO and international aviation group bringing together the world’s airlines to focus on Global Warming.

The ICAO presents the data sets that show the airline industry contributing 2% of global warming. The FAA has partnered with this group to commit to increasing fuel efficiency by 2% every year from 2009 to 2050.

These days it is still surprising to find groups like these working towards saving the planet, but someday soon it will not be surprising it will be expected.

Christmas Cheer!

Hello Everyone. As the weather cools down the shopping season is heating up. This weekend my family and I began the “what do you want” questioneering process, only to find that we weren’t that into it.

Something has changed for us and, thanks to the brilliant and kind heart of my brother Spencer, we are foregoing all but the mightiest of gifts in favor of our favorite charities.

So, without further ado, I let him explain in his own words. The email I just received:


Hey Everyone, Greetings and Happily Holidays to all.  I hope everyone is doing well and is looking forward to a great holiday and new year experience.  So this email is concerning all that time, energy, and money spent on finding gifts for that loved one.  This year I want our gifts to be simple, so I say we follow the ABC’s of giving.

A) ltruism: Donate money to a charity of your recipients choice.
B) uilds: Build, make, craft, design, or paint something for that loved one.
C) hange: Give change or other unwanted items to the homeless, organizations, etc.

Many well-thought out gifts can be rewarding and long lasting, yet instead of wasting money and time looking for excessive gifts and material items, we donate money to the charities of our choice.  This way the money we spend is going to something worthwhile and it has a connection to each and every person.  So if you really need something then that is fine, but otherwise donate to a good cause.  Here is a list of the people’s charity of preference and various charity organizations. Tis’ the season of giving and receiving to our loved ones everywhere!

Stevie:          American Farmland Trust, NPR, Wikipedia
Shawn:        The Salvation Army, Greenpeace, Toys for Tots
Spencer:      Heifer International, Kiva, Unicef,BUSODA
Mama:         ? need info
Papa:          ? need info
Krystal:       Busoda (Krystal’s Uganda Non-Profit), World Vision
Amy:          Atlas Corps, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Alzheimer’s Association

Poverty &
Red Cross : the American Red Cross has been the nation’s premier emergency response organization. As part of a worldwide movement that offers neutral humanitarian care to the victims of war, the American Red Cross distinguishes itself by also aiding victims of devastating natural disasters.
World Vision : The focus of the World Vision (WV) organization is divided into five major areas: emergency relief, education, health care, economic development, and promotion of justice.
The Salvation Army : is a prominent non-governmental relief agency and is usually among the first to arrive with help after natural or man-made disasters. They have worked to alleviate suffering and help people rebuild their lives. 83 cents to every dollar you donate goes directly to support social services around your area.
Habitat for Humanity : an international, Christian, non-governmental, non-profit organization devoted to building “simple, decent, and affordable” housing. Homes are built using volunteer labor and are sold at no profit.
Doctors Without Borders : an international medical humanitarian organization created by doctors and journalists in France in 1971.
Care : a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty.
Heifer International : provides gifts of livestock and plants, as well as education in sustainable agriculture, to financially-disadvantaged families around the world.
Oxfam International : works directly with communities and we seek to influence the powerful to ensure that poor people can improve their lives and livelihoods and have a say in decisions that affect them.
Kiva : world’s first person-to-person micro-lending website, empowering individuals to lend to unique entrepreneurs around the globe.
Goodwill : helps people earn a living, improve their lives, and strengthen their families and their communities.
Alzheimer’s Association Our Mission: To eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health.

Busoda: A local non-profit human rights organization located in Uganda that holistically helps orphans and other vulnerable children by sponsoring the child: education, hunger relief, nutrition, HIV/AIDS education.
Toys for Tots : The principal Toys for Tots activity which takes place each year is the collection and distribution of toys in the communities in which a Marine Corps Reserve Unit is located.
Unicef : United Nations General Assembly on December 11, 1946, to provide emergency food and healthcare to children in countries that had been devastated by World War II.
Save the Children : independent organization creating lasting change in the lives of children in need in the United States and around the world.
Feed the Children : delivers food, medicine, clothing and other necessities to individuals, children and families who lack these essentials due to famine, war, poverty, or natural disaster.
Compassion : a Christian child advocacy ministry that releases children from spiritual, economic, social and physical poverty and enables them to become responsible, fulfilled Christian adults.

American Farmland Trust : helps farmers and ranchers protect their land, produce a healthier environment and build successful communities.
Greenpeace : a non-governmental organization for the protection and conservation of the environment. Greenpeace uses direct action, lobbying and research to achieve its goals.
Friends of the Earth : focuses on clean energy and solutions to global warming, protecting people from toxic and new, potentially harmful technologies, and promoting smarter, low-pollution transportation alternatives.
Earth Island Institute : grassroots campaigns dedicated to conserving, preserving, and restoring the ecosystems on which our civilization depends.
The Nature Conservancy : the leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people.
Rare Conservation : We train and support leaders from the world’s top environmental organizations, local grassroots groups, and governments – all of which are increasingly aware that failure to create support at the community level reduces the chance of conservation success.
Chesapeake Bay Foundation: Pollution and other harmful activities degrade the Bay. The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) fights for strong and effective laws and regulations.

National Public Radio (NPR) : a privately and publicly funded non-profit membership media organization that serves as a national syndicator to 797 public radio stations in the United States.
Wikipedia : a free, web-based, collaborative, multilingual encyclopedia project supported by the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation. Its name is a portmanteau of the words wiki (a technology for creating collaborative websites, from the Hawaiian word wiki, meaning “quick”) and encyclopedia. Wikipedia’s 14 million articles (3.1 million in English) have been written collaboratively by volunteers around the world, and almost all of its articles can be edited by anyone with access to the site
KCRW : a community service of Santa Monica College, is Southern California’s leading National Public Radio (NPR) affiliate, featuring an eclectic mix of music, news and arts programming.
Atlas Corps: an international citizen sector organization that identifies mid-career CSO leaders from the global south to volunteer for one year in the US to learn best practices, share unique perspectives and return home to strengthen the global citizen sector.

Comprehensive Charity Information
Top Rated Charities
Charity Guide
America’s Charities
IRS Tax Deductible Charities
Just Give
Charity Watch
Charity Navigator

General Information
World Health Organization
United Nations
World Bank
International Monetary Fund
World Trade Organization
Food and Agriculture Org
CIA World Factbook

Rant About Lazy Americans

So I posted this comment on twitter as robotchampion:

@gavinNewsom in San Francsico, signs first ever compost mandate, requires food scraps be gathered for composting. –

And got this response in Facebook:

“Nothing like building global harmony through state coercion!”

Now this gets me going. In my journeys through A Clean Life one thing keeps hitting me smack in the head. Our environmental problems come from us, the people.

You can’t blame the big companies anymore. You can’t blame the government anymore. There is nothing left to blame and that means we are the last to change. We are passively resisting a better world…why?

lazycatIf you look at Zero Waste initiatives around the country they do so much for every community. Starting with saving money for people, in the form of lower taxes or reduced trash costs. Then go onto time savings, producing so much trash takes effort. You have to open, trash it, and then carry out to the street. We take so many trips to empty our cans each week. Then we have to drag out a bin to the curb. Place bags in the trash cans.

Just think about it, break the habit and the routine. Save money, spend less time throwing things away, and yes make our communities a better place to live. In fact, the environmental benefits are enormous, effecting nearly every place you can go.

Then look at the Local Food movement. This is one of those insane topics. Overweight people who diet, workout, and spend money on diet foods and gyms, actually complain about the cost of local food. The number one most important thing you can do for your body is to have a solid diet. Local food is the diet you need and local fresh food is the perfect diet.

Yet we passively resist. Partly, I think, due to a mistaken belief in mass marketing. You know those commercials and brand labels that offer you the perfect chocolate snack with enriched vitamins and fortified minerals. Ya, believing in that marketing is like satisfying a thirst with one drop of water. You don’t think those companies plan on not filling you up. Why would they ever want you to get full?

The real value of that chocolate bar is minimal to your body, like one drop of water when you need a glass of water.

Cost. It’s a myth. Good food is cheap. Go to any store that sells local food and you will find cheap prices. The problem here is twofold. First, please don’t go to those places and try to buy macaroni and cheese. You will not find any 20 cent Ramen noodles here. Buy the food that they specialize in and you will find great prices. Don’t get angry at these kind of stores because apples are cheap and cheetos are 6$ a bag.

Second, you don’t understand food. Everything we eat is grown/raised somewhere. Then there is a harvest time when that food type is abundant. This seasonal food is cheap due to abundance, better for you because its so ripe, and completely fulfilling. They are glasses of water.

Americans don’t follow this pattern though. We eat whatever we want whenever we want. Most think this is ideal, but its not. The ideal is a fit healthy body that avoids the doctor’s office and occasionally partakes in non-seasonal food.

Wow, this rant is angry. It does show you why I’m all for a little state coercion. How else do you get people to change??

But hey now don’t take my word for it. Dig into the issues and you will find these words to be truth. Or, watch this video of San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom:

“if they dont care about themselves, or their family, then its like second hand smoke it effects all of us”

Share Your Trash Habits

Every couple of Sundays I put out a question for my friends on twitter. I ask them to update me on their trash habits and what they do for the environment. Below is my query from June 7 and here is one from May 10

The Query


The Answers

bindr we always use our made-from-recycled-material bags for grocery shopping so we don’t use disposable packaging #acleanlife

kttobin @robotchampion I refilled my water bottle at the baseball game, rather than use a new plastic one. #acleanlife

cheeky_geeky @robotchampion I kept myself isolated from the world so as no to do it harm. #acleanlife #opentointerpretation

lizdanzer @robotchampion #acleanlife I stopped buying cds and now instead use itunes to buy all my music! All that unnecessary plastic is saved.

cacner Srsly @robotchampion I make my own potting soil from compost & peat moss. Made ~5 cu yd and still have more compost #acleanlife

robotchampion #acleanlife – i spent hours this week removing the tape from my mailed home packages so i could recycle the paper

blairDC skipping out on rooftop parties @beaconskybar & donovan house. #lazybones but making enviro contribution by not driving #acleanlife :-p

robotchampion #acleanlife – strange but true, for the environment im asking everyone in my household to call it the landfill bin, not trash bin…

krazykriz Brought my own bags to the grocery store. #acleanlife (@robotchampion)

mcpaige @robotchampion Ive not bought water bottles still. #plastic

kstreetkate@robotchampion 1 thing I do for the environment? I handle green collar jobs for DC Dept of Employment Services… that’s a ton!!

j3@robotchampion weird one for you: I only write on unlined paper. Fit more, use less, more creative & flexible.

mrmerlot@acleanlife @robotchampion found a new way to conserve, a vitamix blender: throw in full fruits, veggies, blends to perfection! yum!

how to build community

Share Your Trash Habits

Reduce-Reuse-Recycle: Broken rocking chair from curb+hay bale twine=the fourth R, relaxation by K.Muncie on Flickr.

On Sunday, May 10, I put out a call for my friends on twitter. I asked them to share their trash habits and what they do for the environment. Here are the results:

The Query

robotchampion: Friends, I’m interested in ur trash habits, share one thing u do for environment..reduce-reuse-recycle. Send responses w/ #acleanlife tag

The Answers

robotchampion: ive made a bigger effort to recycle all paper in my life, including carrying stuff around and from work to recycle bin at home

kmallwein: still more to do but traditional trash recycling + turn stuff & magazines into art

selil: i only have one computer for work and home thereby keeping my stuff in one place and removing need to print stuff.

selil: In a family of seven we combine loads of a laundry so every load is a full load. saves a ton of water.

kufflink: my wife washes ziplock freezer bags.

kmallwein: when the weather’s nice I dry clothes outside – nice fresh smell and saves electricity

robotchampion – I removed my trash can at work to see of I can reduce my worked and now I’m trying it in my bedroom at home

blairDC: i use a 100% recyclable/reusable bag for groceries (it replaces 50 plastic bags!)

j3: Clean Currents 100% windpower for our house, only about 8% more than regular Pepco Coal.

kmallwein: Electric lawnmower dead (+10yrs old) – have to dig out the push mower that I just bought to go totally green

kmallwein: My new push mower is very green but it doesn’t do weeds very well which is mostly what my yard consists of right now #conundrum

robotchampion: 4 mothers day instead of mailing card, saved paper/CO2, wrote a post and asked siblings to comment –

deyarrison: I only purchase products with recyclable packaging. I give Kleen Kanteens and tote bags as gifts to help others reduce too.