Styrofoam Use to be Banned in New York City

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Our Thursday green news brings you the latest on green architecture, climate change, energy and communities:

Styrofoam cups, sustainability

Photo courtesy of Trisha Weir via Flickr

  • Styrofoam use to be banned in New York City:  New York’s City Council recently approved a ban on the use of polystyrene  containers (also known as Styrofoam), which makes it the largest American city to pass such a ban. As mayor Michael Bloomberg stated: “Foam pollutes the waste stream, making it harder to recycle food waste as well as metal glass and plastic.” New Yorkers discard about 23,000 tons of polystyrene products each year; majority of them ends up in landfills for 500 years or longer.”
  • Nike company switches to water-free and chemical-free technology: Companies Nike and Adidas are switching to a new  sustainable and “revolutionary technology” in dying their textiles. The carbon-based process can dye polyester without the use of any water or chemicals. This technology can revolutionize the entire textile industry, which contributes to the toxic footprint mainly from the dyeing process, and uses enormous amounts of water. According to Eric Sprunk, Nike’s vice president of merchandising and product: “We want to collaborate with progressive dye houses, textile manufacturers and consumer apparel brands to scale this technology and push it throughout the industry.”
  • Norwegian army fights climate change with vegetarian diet: As part of their fight against climate change, the Norwegian military has recently announced that it plans to introduce a vegetarian diet to all its troops once a week. These new meatless Mondays are meant to reduce consumption of foods requiring production that contributes heavily to global warming. As the army’s spokesman Eystein Kvarving noted: “It’s a step to protect our climate. The idea is to serve food that’s respectful of the environment. It’s not about saving money, rather about being more concerned for our climate, more ecologically friendly and also healthier.” The new meatless diet has already been introduced at one of Norway’s main bases and will soon be rolled out to all units, including those serving overseas. It’s estimated it will cut its meat consumption by 150 tonnes per year.
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