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New York City Bans Foam Food and Beverage Containers

New York City's ban on polystyrene coffee cups and clamshell food containers should reduce street litter and help clean up waterways. The new rule took effect on Jan. 1 but businesses have six months to comply. (Image credit: Janine / BY-NC-ND / Flickr) New York City’s streets will have less litter and its rivers and bays will be less polluted as the Big Apple becomes the largest jurisdiction in the country to ban polystyrene foam food and beverage containers. The new policy, effective January 1, 2019, caps an intense, five-year battle in which the plastics industry, led by the Dart…


Researchers Raise Questions About Rigid Foam Flame Retardant

A flame retardant introduced in 2011 as an environmentally safer alternative for polystyrene insulation can break down in the presence of sunlight and heat into chemicals that are potentially harmful to the environment, a group of German researchers said in a published report. In an article in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, the researchers said they had tested a flame retardant called Polymeric FR. The compound was designed to replace hexabromocyclodecane (HBCD) in extruded and expanded polystyrene (XPS and EPS) foam insulation. Both are commonly used in residential construction. Polymeric FR, developed by Dow Chemical, has a higher molecular…


Carbon Crossroads: Can Germany Revive Its Stalled Energy Transition?

One of many wind farms in Germany, where the number of turbines nears 30,000. Despite a huge push, greenhouse gas emissions have not declined as quickly as expected, and polls show 75% of Germans want the government to do more. (Image credit: Benefit of Hindsight / CC BY-NC-ND / Flickr) This post originally appeared at Yale Environment 360. Northern Germany, from the Polish borderlands in the east to the Netherlands in the west, is the stronghold of Germany’s muscular onshore wind power industry. This is where the lion’s share of the country’s nearly 30,000 wind turbines are sited, a combined…


Flatrock Passive: A Winter Update

Editor’s Note: This is one of a series of blogs by David Goodyear describing the construction of his new home in Flatrock, Newfoundland, the first in the province built to the Passive House standard. You’ll find his complete blog here. In a previous post I talked a little about food security. I tried to focus some of the landscape in our yard on producing food — and it was a huge success! We had a steady supply of baby root vegetables and greens until the end of September. The garden was quite a bit of work but it was amazingly…


FedEx Hub Selects Oldcastle for Largest Segmented Retaining Wall System

FedEx Hub Selects Oldcastle for Largest Segmented Retaining Wall System | 2019-01-25 | Walls & Ceilings This website requires certain cookies to work and uses other cookies to help you have the best experience. By visiting this website, certain cookies have already been set, which you may delete and block. By closing this message or continuing to use our site, you agree to the use of cookies. Visit our updated privacy and cookie policy to learn more. This Website Uses CookiesBy closing this message or continuing to use our site, you agree to our cookie policy. Learn More This website…


Minneapolis May Require Energy Evaluations on Homes for Sale

City officials backing the energy evaluations see it as part of a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. But some Minneapolis real estate agents express concerns that required energy evaluations would be invasive and impact sales. (Image credit: Robin Amer / CC BY-NC-ND / Flickr) In Minneapolis, the City Council is tinkering with a proposal that would require an independent energy evaluation of houses when they go on the market. Although the plan is still evolving, according to an article posted by the Star Tribune, evaluators may be boring holes into walls of houses built before 1980 to check on…

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