Category Archives: Green Biz
The Velib’ bicycle program in Paris celebrated its one millionth bicycle voyage last month. If you’re not yet familiar with Paris’s city-sponsored bicycle program, it’s such an innovative and “green travel” program in the form of a public transportation service, that the Velib’, in and of itself, is a reason to visitParis.
* Greening Beauty *
A statistic the film cites is that prior to the past hundred years 90 percent of war victims were combatants and 10 percent were civilians. Now it is the reverse, with 90 percent of victims being civilians to 10 percent actual combatants. The total body counts may be lower, but the documentary makes clear the human costs of spreading “freedom.” In addition there’s the toll on our coral reefs, water supply, soil, air and just about everything else we need to sustain life on Earth. There’s a cringe-worthy moment of footage of a U.S. armed forces official selling the natives around Bikini Atoll on their important contribution to humanity in allowing nuclear bomb tests near their homes.
It becomes clear that people in these conflict areas don’t hate us, as Bush said, because of our freedom, they hate us because we’re assholes. We seem to have a bad habit of bombing, consuming resources, salting the earth and moving on. The film doesn’t look to place blame on our men and women in the armed services, but does shine a light on economic policies that put them there. With documentaries like this, it’s getting harder and harder for our government to sell war as the humanitarian act of liberation. If you have to see the proof for yourself, the images are here and they’re not easy to look at.
The film is being aired locally around the country, is available for screenings and on DVD. For more information visit www.scarredlandsfilm.org
Photo Credit: Scarred Lands and Wounded Lives
SHELBURNE, Vt., May 12, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) –
MasterCard and Brighter Planet today announced a new program to help make travel carbon emissions analysis easier – and more accurate – for the businesses worldwide that use MasterCard corporate cards.
The Carbon Emissions Reporting program will initially be launched in the United States later this year.
Developed in response to the nearly 80 percent of companies expressing an interest in green travel initiatives, the MasterCard Carbon Emissions Reporting feature represents the first time that automatic reporting and analysis of estimated travel-related carbon emissions data will be available to corporate cardholders based on their card transactions.
“We continue to innovate and expand our enhanced data initiatives to help businesses more efficiently manage their corporate card programs and meet current and future analytical needs,” said Jay Singer, group head of U.S. Commercial Products at MasterCard Worldwide. “This collaboration with Brighter Planet will help companies with MasterCard corporate card programs continue to evaluate the impact their travel activities and corporate buying decisions have on their broader sustainability initiatives.”
Increased Focus on Corporate Environment Impact
With consumers and businesses alike becoming more sensitive about costs as well as carbon footprints, the launch comes at a critical time. According to the National Business Travel Association, U.S. business travel generates $240 billion in annual spending.
The Carbon Emissions Reporting program provides access to new data that is increasingly valued by companies as they strive to benchmark sustainability goals and initiatives, confront sustainability standards on their supply chains, and address the environmental concerns of stakeholders. The new initiative represents a novel model, implemented on an unprecedented scale.
“Our work with MasterCard is about giving companies deeper insights on travel purchasing so they can make smarter decisions,” said Patti Prairie, CEO of Brighter Planet. “Travel is a huge driver of costs and carbon emissions – as much as 30 or 40 percent of total operations for some companies.”
Sustainability in Action
Detailed estimated data on flights, rental cars, hotels and other travel purchases will be automatically processed by Brighter Planet’s CM1 calculation platform, which will integrate carbon scores into MasterCard smartdata.gen2(TM), MasterCard’s industry-leading, web-based expense management and reporting solution. The carbon scoring, which uses independently validated, standards-compliant calculation methodologies, will let companies benchmark, track, compare, and report various emissions metrics across organizational divisions.
“The MasterCard Carbon Emissions Reporting program is a remarkable step forward in accelerating the availability of information for companies on their carbon footprint,” said Mindy Lubber, president of Ceres, a leading coalition of investors and environmental groups working on sustainability issues. “As we all know, in the business world, what gets measured gets managed.