Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Numbers? You want numbers? Yeah, we got numbers.

The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change is readying to release a draft on climate change later this month, but details of it have leaked out. This comes as NOAA recently released a draft of a report looking at what effect climate change had on 12 extreme weather events last year. And so, we have a bunch of numbers from some different sources, but they’re all boiled down below:

  • The probability of a Sandy-like storm surge is already double what it was in 1950.
  • High temperatures, such as those experienced in the U.S. in 2012, are now likely to occur four times as frequently.
  • If the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere doubles, which is well on its way to happening, the long-term rise in the temperature of the earth will be at least 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit, but more likely above 5 degrees. 
  • If human society keeps burning fossil fuels with abandon, considerable land ice could melt and the ocean could rise as much as three feet by the year 2100. 
  • Large-scale droughts are four times as likely amid current temperatures than at pre-industrial levels.
  • Some climate models project that the Arctic will be ice-free in summer within a decade — spelling disaster for low-lying countries such as Bangladesh and Pacific Island nations.
  • For every 2 degrees Fahrenheit of warming, the EPA says it expects a 5 to 15 percent reduction in crop yields; a 3 to 10 percent increase in rain during heavy precipitation events which can lead to flooding; a 5 to 10 percent decrease in stream flow and some river basins; and a 200 to 400 percent increase in the area burned by wildfire in parts of the western United States.

The numbers keep getting worse, and it’s no coincidence anymore. Global warming is getting worse and needs to be halted.

As Hurricane Isaac neared the Louisiana shore, many observers immediately thought of Hurricane Katrina’s impact 7 years ago. And while the storm certainly evoked images of that tragic period in New Orleans’ history, it also seems to have washed ashore memories of a more recent disaster in the Gulf Coast.

Oil in the form of tar has washed up all along the coast, prompting bans on fishing in some areas as the government calls for help to clean up the area. All eyes are fixated on the BP Deepwater Horizon rig as the source:

“I’d say there’s a smoking gun,” said Garret Graves, Gov. Bobby Jindal’s top adviser on coastal issues. He said tests were being done to verify the source of the oil.
“It’s an area that experienced heavy oiling during the oil spill,” he said.

Of course, in BP’s usual “What? You mean us? Are you sure? Nah, double-check,” response, they’re hedging that it was from that spill. They’re acting as though there was some other recent spill that was the cause and not the one that was the largest oil spill in history.

“It is premature to make any claims about possible oiling there — whether it is from the Deepwater Horizon accident or any other source,” BP said in a statement emailed late Tuesday.

The idea of tar balls washing ashore is hardly new. In an article from February of this year, National Geographic took an in-depth look at the remaining oil in the Gulf Coast and how it’s affecting the shoreline.

Markus Huettel, a benthic ecologist at Florida State University, has been researching the status of Deepwater Horizon oil on Florida Panhandle beaches since June 2010. Huettel explained that while much of the BP well’s oil was degraded or evaporated. A staggering amount—he suggests 60 percent is a conservative estimate—remains unaccounted for.

I suppose in someone’s twisted mind at BP, the new closings of the beach because of tar is only a fraction of the downtime compared to the months of lost fishing that BP’s oil spill forced on the industry, so why rush to clean it up? But the company wrecked the shore and the Gulf Coast with the spill, so quibbling over who’s to blame for a portion of it – when it’s obvious it’s you – is not only poor form, it’s insulting. Then again, it’s far too late to expect BP to get it’s act together.

Summer 2012 Newsletter

LOGI founder honored by NE Patriots as Community MVP

Martinelli_Matthew2The New England Patriots Charitable Foundation awarded third prize in the 2012 Myra Kraft Community MVP Awards to Matt Martinelli of Lights Out, Green In. Martinelli was honored as one of 16 volunteers, among the more than 300 New England nominees, for his work in the community. The honor comes with a $2,500 grant for Lights Out, Green In.

According to the Patriots: “Martinelli is a great example of turning his passion about the importance of conserving energy into a nonprofit that is making a difference. As the founder of Lights Out, Green In, his vision is to educate and give people tangible tools to live more efficiently. He has collected hundreds of energy conservation pledges and works tirelessly to help curb climate change.”
Martinelli was nominated for the award by fellow board member Mary Welsh McBurney.
“It is such an honor to be recognized by the Kraft famly as a recipient of the Myra Kraft Community MVP Awards. Myra Kraft’s commitment to philanthropy and impact on the community was legendary during her life and it’s heartwarming to see it grow stronger in her memory,” said Martinelli. “This award will allow Lights Out, Green In, Inc. to reach many more people with its message of conservation and demonstrate how making simple changes to everyday habits can combat climate change. I feel blessed to be recognized with this award and hope I can continue to channel the spirit of the late Mrs. Kraft and focus on the health of future generations and our environment.”
“Like” us on Facebook
Facebook has changed over the years – and so has LOGI’s presence on the site. Lights Out, Green In is no longer a “group” that can send out messages to all of its friends. But – if you “like” LOGI and become a “friend” – news, photos and events for the nonprofit can show up in your timeline. “Like” LOGI and become a “friend” immediately.
Follow Lights Out, Green In on Twitter
As Twitter grows in popularity, so does Lights Out, Green In’s power to reach people with daily “pledge alerts” and news from our blog, which offers links and analysis on all environmental happenings throughout each week. FollowLightsOutGreen on Twitter and get daily alerts at 10:55 am reminding you to turn off your lights for the pledge. And check us out for other environmental links to our blog.

16 New Englanders honored at Gillette Stadium at the 2012 Myra Kraft Community MVP Awards.

Matthew Martinelli of Boston, Mass. wins third prize award of $2,500 for Lights Out, Green In, Inc.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Volunteers are the backbone of nonprofit organizations.

The Kraft family and New England Patriots Charitable Foundation’s Myra Kraft Community MVP Awards place a spotlight on those who give their time to help others and exemplify leadership, dedication and a commitment to improving their communities through volunteerism. In 2011, the Kraft family and New England Patriots Charitable Foundation announced the renaming of the awards as part of the “Celebrate Volunteerism” campaign in honor Myra Kraft’s example of being a lifelong volunteer.

On June 13, 16 honorees were recognized for their contributions in a ceremony at Gillette Stadium and received grants for their respective nonprofit organizations. Ten New England organizations were presented with $2,500 in honor of their volunteers’ work with five more receiving grants of $10,000 and one grand prize winner of $25,000.

“Volunteers are the unsung heroes of our nonprofit communities,” said Robert Kraft. “Unfortunately, they often go unrecognized for their contributions. These awards give us a chance to thank and recognize them. What I love most about this event is the touching stories and the opportunity to show a small token of our appreciation to these outstanding individuals.”

On hand to congratulate the award winners was Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft, New England Patriots Charitable Foundation President Joshua Kraft, Pro Football and Patriots Hall of Famer and Patriots Executive Director of Community Affairs Andre Tippett, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, tight end Rob Gronkowski and punter Zoltan Mesko.

Matthew Martinelli was one of ten $2,500 third prize winners.

“It is such an honor to be recognized by the Kraft famly as a recipient of the Myra Kraft Community MVP Awards. Myra Kraft’s commitment to philanthropy and impact on the community was legendary during her life and it’s heartwarming to see it grow stronger in her memory,” said Martinelli. “This award will allow Lights Out, Green In, Inc. to reach many more people with its message of conservation and demonstrate how making simple changes to everyday habits can combat climate change. I feel blessed to be recognized with this award and hope I can continue to channel the spirit of the late Mrs. Kraft and focus on the health of future generations and our environment.”

Martinelli is a great example of turning his passion about the importance of conserving energy into a nonprofit that is making a difference. As the founder of Lights Out, Green In, his vision is to educate and give people tangible tools to live more efficiently. He has collected hundreds of energy conservation pledges and works tirelessly to help curb climate change.

“The members of Lights Out, Green In are incredibly proud of Matthew’s selection as a recipient of the Myra Kraft Community MVP Award, and we are grateful to the Kraft family for its work in improving our community. As a small, grassroots, non-profit organization, this award will have a long-lasting impact on our work and allow us to reach an even wider audience in our goal to making our community more environmentally friendly,” said Joseph McBurney, Vice President of Lights Out, Green In, Inc. “This award is a testament to the work of Matthew who has worked tirelessly to build our organization. I am grateful to be a part of Matthew’s vision and I am particularly appreciative of the generosity and commitment to community service of the Kraft family in Mrs. Kraft’s memory.”

The 2012 MVPs represent all six New England states and a variety of nonprofit organizations. Nominations open each spring and for the most up-to-date information, visit www.patriots.com/community.

Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft, Patriots Charitable Foundation President Joshua Kraft, and Patriots and Pro Football Hall of Famer Andre Tippett were joined by Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, tight end Rob Gronkowski and punter Zoltan Mesko to congratulate the Myra Kraft Community MVP Award $2,500 third prize winner Matthew Martinelli from Lights Out, Green In, Inc. for his outstanding volunteerism. During the luncheon the Kraft family awarded $100,000 in grants to 16 New England nonprofits.

The 16 volunteer winners range from 18-82 years old, with one winner from each state in the region. Winning nonprofits include military member support, food cupboards, domestic violence and drug prevention as well as health and fitness.

Join Lights Out, Green In on Earth Day … & Get a T-shirt for $5!

Join Lights Out, Green In on Earth Day this year at the Pawtucket SpringTime Farmers Market from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. On Earth Day this year – Sat., April 21 – Lights Out, Green In will sell discounted T-shirts to support the environment. Pay $5 and get a shortsleeve Lights Out, Green In T-shirt! All the money goes to buying energy-saving bulbs for low-income residents. And while you’re at our table at farmers market, make sure you’ve signed up for the pledge to turn out your lights from 11-1 every day and use natural light and ambient light. Don’t miss Lights Out, Green In on Earth Day at 1005 Main Street in the Hope Artiste Village.

Follow Lights Out, Green In on Twitter

As Twitter grows in popularity, so does Lights Out, Green In’s power to reach people with daily “pledge alerts” and news from our blog, which offers links and analysis on all environmental happenings throughout each week. Follow LightsOutGreen on Twitter and get daily alerts at 10:55 am reminding you to turn off your lights for the pledge. And check us out for other environmental links to our blog.

LOGI’s Annual Tax Filing

In accordance with IRS statutes, Lights Out, Green In has filed its 990-EZ form for 2011. The IRS will make it available for viewing upon public request. As an organization committed to openness, Lights Out, Green In can also supply a copy of the IRS report to those who wish to examine it.

Lights Out, Green In turns 3!
Lights Out, Green In marked its third year in operation last month. The all-volunteer nonprofit has accomplished a great amount in the past three years. Lights Out, Green In has raised more than $10,000 thanks to five fundraisers and a number of donations. LOGI’s donation of more than 3,000 energy-saver bulbs will allow low-income residents to save more than $100,000 per year and save 800,000 pounds of carbon (the equivalent of taking 67 cars off the road) each year the bulbs last. In addition, Lights Out, Green In has secured a number of commitments from businesses and hundreds of assurances from households, pledging to turn off their lights from 11 a.m.  to 1 p.m. each day.
LOGI at the Wintertime Farmers Market
Lights Out, Green In returns to the Wintertime Farmers Market this week (Dec. 10) in Pawtucket, RI. The market, sponsored by FarmFresh RI, runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Saturday through May at Hope Artiste Village (1005 Main St, Pawtucket, RI) and offers local food for every season. Stop by LOGI’s booth and purchase a T-shirt ($7 short-sleeve or $10 long-sleeve) to help support the cause.
Catch Lights Out on the Web
Entering its fourth year in operation, Lightsoutgreenin.org is continuing to offer links and analysis on all environmental news. Along with weekly tips on “green” living, there’s weekly analysis on the hottest news in global warming and twice-weekly links to environmental news across the world supplied by blogger Terry Adams. Don’t forget an easy way to keep up with Lights Out, Green In via social media is to follow us on Twitter - with daily pledge updates and links to all of LOGI’s blogs as soon as they’re posted. Also, check out LOGI’s Facebook page and “Like It” to make sure you’re getting the page’s updates on your news feed.

Face up to a new direction
Lights Out, Green In’s Facebook group is closing and that means LOGI will have a new Facebook page – all you have to do is “Like It” and make sure you’re getting the page’s updates on your news feed. Go “Like It” right now. The move will disable LOGI’s ability to send out monthly messages over Facebook, but you can sign up to get the newsletter via email by taking the 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. pledge. Don’t forget an easy way to keep up with Lights Out, Green In via social media is to follow us on Twitter – with daily pledge updates and links to all of LOGI’s blogs.

Fundraiser success!!!
Supporters of Lights Out, Green In came out in droves to help raise money for the all-volunteer nonprofit on May 15. The bowling fundraiser at Town Hall Lanes in Johnston, RI, raised more than $1,000 for LOGI, which will use the money to help distribute energy-saving bulbs to low-income residents in Rhode Island through a partnership with National Grid and the R.I. Food Bank. Lights Out, Green In raised hundreds of dollars through its silent auction. Companies that donated items include Mohegan Sun, the RI Philharmonic, Providence Bruins, Pawtucket Red Sox, Swarovski, Providence College, Gamm Theatre, Seven Stars Bakery, Boston Celtics and the Boston Red Sox. LOGI would like to thank all of the companies as well as all of our supporters. Be on the lookout for more fundraisers in the future. Check out video highlights from the event here.

Macy’s ‘Shop for a Cause’ is back!
During the past two years, Lights Out, Green In has raised more than $500 through Macy’s Shop for a Cause event. The shopping fundraiser returns August 27 at Macy’s.
Shoppers will pay $5 for a Macy’s all-day discount pass, which offers customers
20% to 10% off most items in the store and 25% off one item. All of the $5 cost goes directly to Lights Out, Green In. If you’d like to buy a pass, please email info@lightsoutgreenin.org.

LOGI at the Summertime Farmers Market
Lights Out, Green In will return to FarmFresh RI’s summer farmers market this year. The event, Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Lippitt Park in Providence, offers residents locally grown produce and will feature a Lights Out, Green In informational booth. LOGI will be collecting pledges from people to turn off their lights from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. as well as promoting simple ways to conserve energy.

2nd Annual Lights Out, Green In BOWL-ATHON – May 15, 12 -2 p.m.

It’s back to the lanes for a day of fun and fundraising for Lights Out, Green In. On Sunday, May 15 from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. at Town Hall Lanes in Johnston, RI, come support the all-volunteer nonprofit. For $20 you get 2 hours of bowling, shoe rental, pizza, drinks and can participate in a raffle and silent auction (prizes include theater, sports and concert tickets along with gift cards) as well as compete for top-score prizes. Best of all, your participation helps raise money to donate energy-saving bulbs to low-income residents in the area. E-mail info@lightsoutgreenin.org or contact Matt Martinelli at 401-374-2406 for more information.

LOGI cuts 675,000 pounds of carbon

Lights Out, Green In helped residents save energy and money by taking scores of incandescent bulbs out of circulation on April 23. Lights Out, Green In gave away 900 free energy-saver bulbs at the Pawtucket Wintertime Farmers’ Market and donated 600 energy-saver bulbs to the RI Food Bank to help low-income residents save money and the environment. Hundreds of people were able to reduce their carbon footprint with this simple and free exchange at the farmers market located at Hope Artiste Village (1005 Main St, Pawtucket). This offer came thanks to a partnership with National Grid as well as a RI DEM Earth Day grant provided by J.R. Vinagro/Patriot Disposal of Johnston, RI.

LOGI goes to college

Lights Out, Green In once again took its message to college campuses. During Earth Week, executive director Matt Martinelli talked to dozens of students from the earth group at Hamilton College. The speech on April 19 focused on simple ways to conserve energy, with an emphasis on pledging to turn off your lights from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

APRIL 23, 10 A.M.: Trade in your old light-bulbs for energy savers
Don’t miss your chance during Earth Week to save energy and money by taking your incandescent bulbs out of circulation. On April 23, visit Lights Out, Green In’s table at the Pawtucket Wintertime Farmers’ Market and swap up to 5 incandescent bulbs for energy-saving CFL bulbs. The best part – IT’S FREE. The offer lasts from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. while supplies last. Reduce your carbon footprint with this simple and free exchange at the farmers market located at Hope Artiste Village (1005 Main St, Pawtucket). This offer comes thanks to a partnership with National Grid as well as a RI DEM Earth Day grant provided by J.R. Vinagro/Patriot Disposal of Johnston, RI.

2nd Annual Lights Out, Green In BOWL-ATHON – May 15, 12 -2 p.m.
It’s back to the lanes for a day of fun and fundraising for Lights Out, Green In. On Sunday, May 15 from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. at Town Hall Lanes in Johnston, RI, come support the all-volunteer nonprofit. For $20 you get 2 hours of bowling, shoe rental, pizza, drinks and can participate in a raffle and silent auction (prizes include theater, sports and concert tickets along with gift cards) as well as compete for top-score prizes. Best of all, your participation helps raise money to donate energy-saving bulbs to low-income residents in the area. Sign up as an individual or in teams of 5 by the registration deadline of May 12. E-mail info@lightsoutgreenin.org or contact Matt Martinelli at 401-374-2406.

LOGI goes to college
Lights Out, Green In once again takes its message to college campuses next month. During Earth Week, executive director Matt Martinelli will talk to the earth group at Hamilton College. The speech on April 19 will focus on simple ways to conserve energy, with an emphasis on pledging to turn off your lights from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

A report this week on cities’ design coupled with a recent baby boomer trend could prove to be a good sign for the environment.

A report on how a city’s design and transit system can ease gas costs seems rather obvious. Those who symbolize living in a big city with leaving a big carbon footprint are simply wrong. The amount of energy a person living in the city uses is far less than someone living in the suburbs.

The average American driver logs 25 miles per day. Motorists in compactly developed cities that have extensive transit systems can drive nearly 50% less. The way to cut back on driving miles in a city isn’t by reducing commutes, says Carol Coletta, president and CEO of the group: “What adds up is all those small trips, which are much shorter and not as necessary,” she says. “The question is, how do we make the city a place where we don’t have to drive as much or as often?”

It makes sense considering suburban sprawl has coincided with the rise in greenhouse gas emissions. Should we all just live in big cities? I’m sure the mayors of Buffalo, Detroit and Cleveland would love to make that mandatory, but for many Americans its unreasonable – and too stressful. But not for seniors.

Baby boomers older than 60 have been left with large, empty houses in the suburbs – and now are moving back toward cities for many reasons, including gas prices, environmental concerns and social and demographic change. But cities are adapting, according to this article:

Ms. Evans says many decorators are telling her that the boomers want to transform the style of their houses along with their lives, trading in a suburban house for an urban loft, for example. She added: “Baby boomers have always been experimental. That won’t change as they get older. They’re willing to go outside their comfort zones.”

It seems the baby boomers might have the answer to climate change after all.