Replay: Ukraine’s “Svidomo”, US Climate Alliance, NJ’s Groundbreaking Climate Law, Electricity from Your Sidewalk!
SVIDOMO, “MADE IN UKRAINE”
In honor of our continuing support for the people of Ukraine, we bring you another story honoring Ukraine’s green movement.
The International Organization normally assists in orderly and humane migration. However, it recently partnered with Made in Ukraine, a woman-led association. The organizations did so for the purpose of promoting Ukrainian businesses. Together, they launched a platform called Svidomo Made in Ukraine. Svidomo means sustainably or consciously.
The work of Svidomo Made is to create a network of sustainably responsible businesses promoting responsible production and consumption in Ukraine. Responsible production and consumption is based on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals – 17 global goals adopted by world leaders at the historic UN Summit in September 2015, designed to tackle all forms of poverty, inequality and climate change by 2030.
For a business to participate, businesses agree to adhere to the platform’s six principles of sustainable entrepreneurship:
- Respect for human rights
- Decent pay
- Safe working conditions
- Refusal of child and forced labor
- Protection and preservation of the environment
- Transparency of supply chains.
Svidomo Made does this through training, communication with international experts, creating opportunities for partnerships, hosting workshops and business forums to help businesses achieve the six principles.
The website contains some fascinating information on the Ukraine green movement, along with videos from Svimodo Made conferences in 2019 and 2020. There are also nine instagram videos featuring nine different green Ukrainian companies.
Why does Svidomo Made in Ukraine matter to us? Svidomo Made is an organization changing one small to medium business at a time into something that will collectively change how Ukraine
DEEPER DIVE: Svidomo Made, IOM, Perlid
GROUNDBREAKING NEW JERSEY LAW PROTECTS OVERBURDENED COMMUNITIES FROM POLLUTANTS
At the height of the pandemic, NJ became the first state in the nation to enact a groundbreaking environmental justice bill into law. The legislation is specifically designed to protect “overburdened communities from pollution.”
“Any community where 35 percent of the households qualify as low-income according to the U.S. Census, 40 percent of households are minority, or 40 percent of households have limited English proficiency” qualify as “overburdened communities.” By that definition, NJ’s municipalities have an estimated overburdened population of 4 million.
The law requires that the NJ Department of Environmental Protection evaluate eight types of facilities for public health impacts and refuse/rescind permits if those facilities are found to negatively impact overburdened communities. Facilities include:
- Gas fired power plants and cogeneration facilities);
- Resource recovery facilities or incinerators; sludge processing facilities;
- Sewage treatment plants with a capacity of more than 50 million gallons per day;
- Transfer stations or solid waste facilities;
- Recycling facilities that receive at least 100 tons of recyclable material per day;
- Scrap metal facilities;
- Landfills; or
- Medical waste incinerators, except those attendant to hospitals and universities.
Why does this law matter to us? As Newark’s Mayor Ras Baraka says, “This historic legislation is a model to show the rest of the Country how to ensure that communities are protected and how by utilizing both activism and leadership simultaneously, you can truly change the status quo.”
DEEPER DIVE: NJ GOV, A Just Climate, O’Melveny
LOVE TAKING A WALK? NOW YOUR STEPS CAN GENERATE ELECTRICITY!
Laurence Kemball-Cook studied industrial design engineering at Loughborough University in London. During that time, he often passed through Victoria Train Station. He couldn’t help notice the hundreds of thousands of people taking hundreds of thousands of footsteps. In his mind, he saw those feet as kinetic energy, “depositing” energy right into the Victoria Station’s floor.
That sparked him to consider how to harness all that kinetic energy and then store it. After all, about 75 million visitors pass through Victoria Station annually. Imagine how much energy 75 million people can generate just by walking.
Kemball-Cook experimented with 750 paving tile prototypes before finally creating a successful one which acts as a battery. And in 2009, Pavegen, the kinetic paving tile company was born. Its mission is to advance sustainable energy innovations that contribute to climate change solutions.
How does this work? Every time a person steps on a Pavegen tile, that footstep generates between 2 and 5 joules of energy. A joule is equal to about a tenth of a volt. Put another way, every 18-40 steps generates the equivalent power found in a 9-volt battery. Imagine that multiplied by 75 million people and you get an inkling of a notion of an idea of how much energy can be generated.
Right now, its website touts the output of Pavegen tiles as most often used for low-power lighting sources such as LEDs or a monitor that can display anything from the amount of clean electricity being generated to normal messaging signs..
Pavegen has over 200 projects in 37 different countries including in Washington, DC, Romania and Kazakstahn.
Why does Pavegen’s invention matter to us? Pavegen’s off-grid design offers backup solutions for heavily populated, grid-tied communities should natural or other disaster disconnect them from the grid. It also offers densely populated off-grid communities access to generating their own instantaneous power.
DEEPER DIVE: Pavegen, NEW ATLAS, CNET
THE US CLIMATE ALLIANCE
Back in 2017, the U.S. withdrew from the Paris Agreement. In response to that, three U.S. governors, NY’s Andrew Cuomo, Washington State’s Jay Inslee, and California’s Jerry Brown, came together to launch the United States Climate Alliance (USCA).
Its purpose is to create coordinated action at the state-level to ensure that America would still contribute to the global effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the Paris climate agreement. The goal of the Paris Agreement is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.
The Alliance is taking a 4-pronged approach to achieve its goals:
- Short-lived Climate Pollutant Challenge
- Natural & Working Lands Challenge
- Appliance Efficiency Challenge
- International Cooperation
Why does the U S Climate Alliance matter to us? Currently, 26 states have joined. As of 2018, USCA member states achieved an estimated 14% decrease in emissions. As of 2019, member states created more than 133,000 new jobs in clean energy industries.
DEEPER DIVE: US Climate Alliance