Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Environmental atrophy

Examples of products that waste resources and destroy the planet that I am seeing on a day to day basis here: 

Lawns. Almost all suburban (on a global scale) homes have front and back lawns. These take thousands of gallons of water to maintain, a clear waste of potable water. Even John Green agrees with me! He pictures a world with vegetable gardens instead of yards and imagines the prosperity that would come out of this. 

Krispy Kreme's styrofoam cups! Although you can't tell from the picture, this cup is made of styrofoam. Use paper cups Krispy Kreme! I urge consumers to not drink coffee and/or water if possible at Krispy Kreme - you're supporting sytrofoam cups! 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Climate change alerts

Floods are devastating the Indian state of Uttarkhand. This is a clear example of climate change. Unstable grounds, mass tourism, and torrential rains during the monsoon season are highlighted as the primary reasons for such a natural disaster. 

I keep thinking back on my time as a facilitator at the GIN conference for the Natural Disaster Prevention and Mitigation team when I read news reports claiming that the Indian government did not warn the local people about the possibility of floods. 

While June to September is usually the monsoon season in India, the heavy rain coupled with frequent landslides has culminated in losses of life and disaster. 

Prayers going out to Uttarkhand. 

The ultimate conclusion: We need to fight climate change.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Psi 400

A short post about Singapore's alarming pollution levels today.

The pollution standard index in Singapore has just reached 400, out of a maximum of 500. Over 300 is considered hazardous.

Taking a brief walk down the road is scary.

In California, on days when smog levels are above the EPA's federal healthy maximum, a program called Spare the Air is implemented. Air pollution activities are reduced to reduce the levels of pollution outdoors.

Such a program would be beneficial for Singapore at a time when the reading is above 400!

Hope everyone in Singapore is safe and healthy.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Green on the go - SFO Airport

As I travel around the US visiting colleges that I'll be applying to in the fall, I'll chronicle some of interesting environmental findings I come across - starting off with California. 

1. San Francisco, CA - airport

Ranked #1 by the Siemens Green City Index for its remarkable management of waste, carbon dioxide emissions, air and water quality, transport, land use, and building intelligence, San Francisco is well known for its policies enforcing sustainability. It's airport demonstrates the city's  environmentally focused programs. Terminal 2's bathrooms, Gold LEED certified, proudly inform visitors about the energy they are saving. 

The airport restrooms feature automatic faucets, toilets and Dyson airblade dryers!