Green Living News

New Tesla Model S Now the Quickest Production Car in the Works 

Straight from the Press Office folks!

Today, Tesla introduced the P100D for Model S and Model X. You can find our blog post on the news here and below.

The Model S P100D with Ludicrous mode is the third fastest accelerating production car ever produced, with a 0-60 mph time of 2.5* seconds. However, both the LaFerrari and the Porsche 918 Spyder were limited run, million dollar vehicles and cannot be bought new. While those cars are small two seaters with very little luggage space, the pure electric, all-wheel drive Model S P100D has four doors, seats up to 5 adults plus 2 children and has exceptional cargo capacity. 

The 100 kWh battery also increases range substantially to an estimated 315 miles on the EPA cycle and 613 km on the EU cycle, making it the first to go beyond 300 miles and the longest range production electric vehicle by far. 

The larger battery pack is also available on the Model X, making the world’s quickest SUV even faster. Model X P100D with Ludicrous mode accelerates to 60 mph in 2.9* seconds and travels up to 289 miles EPA and 542 km EU on a single charge. Model X is also a pure electric SUV and can seat up to seven adults.  

Model S and Model X are engineered to be the safest cars on the road and to have the highest ratings from NHTSA. Both have access to the Tesla Supercharger network for the freedom to travel long distance for free. And every Tesla will improve over time with free over the air upgrades.

Tesla customers who have ordered a P90D Ludicrous, but not taken delivery, can upgrade to the 100 kWh pack for $10,000. Existing P90D Ludicrous owners can also upgrade to a 100 kWh pack, but for $20,000, as their used 90 kWh pack will have to be recycled. 
While the P100D Ludicrous is obviously an expensive vehicle, we want to emphasize that every sale helps pay for the smaller and much more affordable Tesla Model 3 that is in development. Without customers willing to buy the expensive Model S and X, we would be unable to fund the smaller, more affordable Model 3 development.  

* Expected value using max power mode and Motor Trend benchmark


Model S P100D with Ludicrous mode

Range: 315 miles (EPA Estimate) / 613 km (NEDC Estimate)

0-60 mph acceleration: 2.5 seconds

0-100 km/h acceleration: 2.7 seconds

Price: starts at $134,500 

Model X P100D with Ludicrous Mode

Range: 289 miles (EPA Estimate) / 542 km (NEDC Estimate)

0-60 mph acceleration: 2.9 seconds

0-100 km/h acceleration: 3.1 seconds

Price: starts at $135,500


Model S and Model X P100D with Ludicrous mode are available to order now. Delivery timing will vary based on location (as early as next month).

Our new 100kWh battery will only be offered as a Performance / Dual Motor option with the Ludicrous Speed Upgrade (P100D with Ludicrous mode).

With this introduction, we are also bringing our Tesla Premium Seats to performance builds of Model S (P100D w/ Ludicrous, P90D w/ Ludicrous, P90D w/out Ludicrous). Tesla Premium Seats are already in all Model X vehicles.

Tesla customers who have ordered a P90D w/ Ludicrous mode, but have not taken delivery of their vehicle may choose to upgrade to P100D for $10,000. Existing P90D w/ Ludicrous mode owners can also upgrade to a P100D, but for $20,000, as their used 90kWh pack will have to be recycled. The upgrade requires physical installation of an all-new 100kWh battery pack (this is not a software update).

Electrification Coalition Congratulates Columbus, Ohio, “Test Market of the USA,” as Winner of Historic Smart City Challenge

Columbus to receive up to $40 million in funding from DOT, and up to $10 million from Paul G. Allen to create a model transportation system. The Electrification Coalition to facilitate electric vehicle deployment as lead implementation partner.

Washington, D.C. — The Electrification Coalition (EC) offers its congratulations to Columbus, Ohio, just announced as the winner of the Department of Transportation (DOT) Smart City Challenge. Columbus emerged as the winner out of seven finalist cities by offering a highly competitive proposal that shared their innovative vision to transform the city’s transportation sector and revitalize the community. As winner, Columbus will be awarded up to $40 million from DOT to implement its strategy, and an additional $10 million from Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Inc.

The EC also congratulates the other six semifinalists and the many other cities that offered thoughtful plans. The Electrification Coalition looks forward to continuing the discussion with these cities on how to develop urban transportation systems that are innovative, efficient, and slash oil dependence.

“Columbus showed incredible vision and leadership in developing a community-wide investment to become a national leader in EV adoption. We look forward to working with Columbus to make it a great place to plug in and drive,” said Ben Prochazka, Director of Strategic Initiatives for the Electrification Coalition.

The Columbus proposal demonstrated a comprehensive plan that included a $90 million matching fund from local area businesses. Other notable elements of the city’s plan include:

  • Expanding its municipal electric vehicle fleet and integrating smart sensor data throughout the region to improve traffic, reduce accidents and slash emissions from all vehicles.
  • Securing a commitment from CEOs of the city’s top 50+ businesses and institutions to purchase and drive electric vehicles, and to install EV charging stations for employees.
  • Improving low-income access to ride-sharing and other public transportation, so residents without cars or smart phones can travel to jobs and other vital destinations.
  • Enhancing smart grid technology to increase efficiency and shave peak load, using EVs as distributed energy storage devices.
  • Installing significant wind and solar power generating capacity over the next four years.

The Smart City Challenge, which drew applications from 78 cities around the country, created a critical discussion of “what’s possible,” exploring scalable solutions to improve the accessibility and efficiency of urban transportation as well as reducing oil consumption through vehicle electrification. The challenge has spurred cities to propose new ideas that, if implemented, could have far reaching impacts nationwide. Today’s announcement is part of DOT’s strategy to fully embrace technology and innovation to help solve today and tomorrow’s transportation challenges. As DOT’s launch partner, Vulcan’s goal is to catalyze reductions in greenhouse gas emissions through creative and practical solutions to transform transportation.

“Columbus is known as the ‘Test Market of the USA,’ with retail stores and restaurants trying new concepts in Columbus before expanding across the country. With DOT and Vulcan announcing Columbus as the winner of the Smart City Challenge, the Electrification Coalition believes Columbus to be the perfect test market to reshape urban transportation,” said EC President and CEO Robbie Diamond. “This country is desperate for innovation and 21st-century transportation solutions like electric and self-driving cars to end our dangerous dependence on the monopoly of oil in transportation. We are excited to see Columbus lead the way.”

As Vulcan’s implementation partner in the Smart City Challenge, the Electrification Coalition brings a long history of expertise creating and managing comprehensive “deployment communities,”—including the pioneering Drive Electric Orlando and Drive Electric Northern Colorado projects—to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles. In the public sector, the EC collaborates with mayors and city managers to transition municipal fleets away from petroleum fuels through the Energy Secure Cities Coalition.

The EC looks forward to working with Vulcan and the City of Columbus as it redefines the concept of mobility within its city limits.

Addendum: Press Statements from Corporate Partners of the Smart City Challenge

American Automobile Association (AAA)

“With roads across the country increasingly congested, it’s essential that cities find smart ways to address 21st century challenges by leveraging new technology and data. The DOT’s Smart City Challenge has served as a catalyst for cities doubling-down on transportation innovation, and Columbus is a sterling example of how urban centers can take immediate action to improve safety and efficiency.”

Jill Ingrassia, Managing Director of Government Relations, AAA and Traffic Safety Advocacy and Board Chair of the Intelligent Transportation Society of America


“We’re excited to see a city taking charge in actively piloting new technology solutions for urban mobility, and catalyzing other cities globally to follow suit. BestMile, as a fleet management platform for autonomous vehicles, is perfectly aligned with the Smart City Challenge’s goals and is looking forward to partnering with cities to advance a truly integrated, networked and accessible transportation ecosystem.”


“We firmly believe that the Smart Cities challenge has been fundamental in establishing a culture of meaningful collaboration between the public, private, and not for profit sectors to extract tangible innovation for the 250 million Americans living within cities. Building off of our partnerships with cities around the country and around the world, Bridj is excited to continue to lead the market by working with the Smart Cities participants to deliver the promise of the future city, today.”

Matthew George, CEO, Bridj


“Columbus laid out a compelling and achievable vision for becoming a truly smart city. This transformation will attract a new wave of growth, innovation and job creation to the region. ChargePoint is pleased to support this effort, focusing on how Columbus can drive widespread adoption of electric vehicles and charging stations, allowing everyone to charge their cars everywhere they go. We congratulate Columbus, its leadership and all of the public and private partners for this winning proposal. ChargePoint stands ready to work with Columbus and smart cities across the nation to accelerate the transition to an electrified transportation future.”

Pasquale Romano, President & CEO, ChargePoint

BYD America

“BYD is a proud partner for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (US DOT) Smart City Challenge, and we look forward to bringing advanced, zero-emission transportation vehicles to this community in the near-future. As the world’s largest electric vehicle manufacturer, BYD knows that clean, zero-emission transportation is readily available and reliable for a variety of vehicle applications. BYD’s mission around the world is to create true zero-emission communities that produce minimal environmental impacts, and I’m excited this community will have the opportunity to soon experience this with BYD as a partner and with the support of the US DOT through this innovative and exciting grant program.”

Stella Li, President, BYD America


“Daimler and its U.S. business units moovel and car2go congratulate Columbus on the city’s winning Smart Cities bid. The smart cities of the future will need to create and use multiple innovative mobility models, and Daimler is excited to work with Columbus to help build a visionary city employing a suite of urban mobility concepts. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Smart Cities contest will kick-start cities’ initiatives to revolutionize and create the true American cities of the future.”

Jessica Nigro, Manager of Outreach & Innovation Policy, Daimler

DC Solar

“The Smart City Challenge is a visionary initiative, and DC Solar is proud to be named a corporate partner with Vulcan Inc., and the U.S. Department of Transportation. We congratulate Columbus and are thrilled to provide DC Solar’s mobile solar solutions and EV infrastructure on behalf of this program.”

Jeff Carpool, CEO, DC Solar


“It’s certainly a good day to be an Ohioan! We extend our congratulations to Columbus on the exciting news. Shared, connected electric vehicles will be an essential part of developing the city’s next-generation transportation ecosystem, and as a leader in the space we’re pleased to have the opportunity to collaborate on a world-class solution.”

Michael Brylawski, CEO, Evercar


“EVgo congratulates the City of Columbus on winning the Smart City challenge. As that Smart City knows, public high speed electric vehicle charging is key to economic growth in a sustainable manner. As the owner of the nation’s largest high speed public charging network, EVgo stands ready to help Columbus build on the 7 chargers we already have installed on the path to a best in class city-wide fast charging network.”

General Motors

“General Motors congratulates the City of Columbus on their Smart City Challenge win and for their leadership role in transforming urban transportation systems. We look forward to working with the Columbus community and our partner Lyft on how best to incorporate our advanced technology and learnings into real world demonstration.”

Dan Turton, Vice President of Federal and Administrative Affairs, GM


“Greenlots is very excited for Columbus. The Smart City Challenge selection will allow Columbus to transform itself while setting an international example for embracing the future of transportation. Greenlots wishes to congratulate Columbus, but also all of the cities that spent countless hours thinking about the future of transportation in their communities. The Smart City Challenge process has jumpstarted new thinking that will lead to a smarter, safer, and cleaner transportation future in this country.”

Brett Hauser, CEO, Greenlots


Honda congratulates Columbus on earning the Smart City grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation. This represents an important role Columbus and the state of Ohio will play in advancing transportation technology. We believe central Ohio is an ideal place to create and evaluate innovative solutions to critical challenges and we look forward to working with the city and the other Smart City business partners to foster an integrated approach to the future of mobility.

Rick Schostek, Executive Vice President, Honda North America


“By selecting Columbus as the winner of their Smart City Challenge, the U.S. Department of Transportation and Vulcan are sending a strong message about the power of technology to transform mobility for all Americans. We are thrilled to work with the City and our partner General Motors to expand access to affordable, sustainable transportation in Columbus communities, while laying the groundwork for deployment of advanced vehicle technologies.”

Emily Castor, Director of Transportation Policy, Lyft

Momentum Dynamics

“The intent of this program is to demonstrate new technologies that can revolutionize transportation while making our environment healthier—by blending autonomous electric vehicles with autonomous wireless charging from Momentum Dynamics, this program has the potential to be a true model for many other cities.”

Andrew Daga, CEO, Momentum Dynamics


“moovel applauds Columbus for winning the USDOT’s Smart City Challenge. The award will help bring Columbus’ bold vision to life and pave the way for the rapid innovation of mobility in all cities through connected technologies that enhance safety and improved quality of life for our communities. moovel imagines a world where people and cities can take advantage of existing transportation infrastructure in a more efficient and connected way, and we look forward to collaborating with Columbus to implement their winning proposal.”

Joseph Kopser, President, moovel Global


“We congratulate the city of Columbus on winning the Smart City Challenge, and we thank Secretary Foxx, U.S. Department of Transportation and Vulcan for their shared vision of intelligent transportation. As the global leader for EV sales, we look forward to working with the city to help them make that vision a reality. In fact, Nissan recently invested in a network of EV fast chargers, and we are pleased to announce the launch of our No Charge to Charge promotion for Nissan LEAF buyers in the Columbus area beginning July 1.”

Andrew Speaker, Director of EV Sales and Marketing, Nissan


“We congratulate Columbus for winning the Smart City Challenge. Nohm looks forward to working with Columbus to achieve its Smart City goals, as well as other forward-thinking cities to realize the benefits of global electrification. Electrification at scale offers tremendous economic and environmental benefits to cities and businesses, and Nohm is leading the way using its proven zero-emission commercial electric platform to replace carbon-based fuels with clean, connected energy.”

Bryan Hansel, CEO & Founder, Nohm


“PlugShare proudly partners in a spirit of collaboration for change with the Smart City Challenge partners and Columbus to eliminate uncertainty and empower citizens through technology by providing them with reliable data, clean EV charging infrastructure, and a voice in industry decision-making. We will amplify the often unheard voice of the user to design a city that facilitates the movement of goods and people faster, safer, and most importantly a city with cleaner air.”

Ashley Horvat, Vice President of Strategic Initiatives, PlugShare


“Everyone at Proterra would like to congratulate Columbus on winning the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Smart City Challenge and applaud its vision for clean, ubiquitous, and future-proofed mobility. Whether it’s through battery-electric transit or similar sustainable infrastructure solutions, cities across the United States have the potential to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and street congestion. We hope that Columbus’ success will inspire these cities to improve air quality, enhance mobility, and address climate change locally and beyond.”

Ryan Popple, CEO, Proterra


“Telefonix is thrilled to be part of this great program for Columbus as the winner of the Smart City Challenge. EV infrastructure at workplaces, like schools, airports, and medical centers are the perfect locations to encourage and support EV drivers for their Monday through Friday commuting. We at Telefonix are a pound partner and looking forward to helping accelerate EV Adoption in Columbus as well as the other cities that applied for this award.”

XL Hybrids

“As a leader in connected fleet electrification solutions for commercial and municipal fleets, XL Hybrids is proud to support the Smart City Challenge. We developed XL Link™ to provide cloud-based vehicle connectivity solutions and make fleet electrification as cost effective and simple as possible.  Congratulations to Columbus, Ohio!”

Tod Hynes, Founder & CEO, XL Hybrids

 Source Electrification Coalition. Thursday, June 23, 2016

Leased fossil fuels on public lands, oceans will be producing decades beyond Paris climate targets says recent report

Study supports the calls on President Obama to ‘Keep It in the Ground’

WASHINGTON, D.C. — An analysis finds that coal, oil and gas already under lease on public lands and oceans in the United States will last far beyond the point scientists predict the world will exceed the temperature targets set out in the global climate agreement that was reached in Paris. The findings support the growing call to President Obama by hundreds of organizations to immediately halt new federal fossil fuel leasing — a step that will keep up to 450 billion tons of potential carbon pollution from reaching the atmosphere.

The report, Over-Leased: How Production Horizons of Already Leased Federal Fossil Fuels Outlast Global Carbon Budgets, uses new U.S. Energy Information Administration data to estimate how long federal coal, oil and natural gas deposits already leased in the U.S. to the fossil fuel industry will last.

The results show that these deposits will be producing fossil fuels decades beyond the dates by which, at current global rates of emissions, it will be too late to avoid devastating global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius and 2 degrees Celsius, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

“This report makes clear that it is irresponsible for President Obama to auction off any more fossil fuels on public lands and oceans if we are to live up to our global climate commitments,” said Randi Spivak, public lands director at the Center for Biological Diversity. “Future generations will live with the impact of decisions made by today’s leaders, and President Obama can protect his legacy, and the planet, by halting more public fossil fuel leases now.”

Figure courtesy EcoShift Consulting

Among the findings in the analysis, which was conducted by EcoShift Consulting for the Center for Biological Diversity and Friends of the Earth:

  • Federal crude oil already under lease will produce for the next 39 years, through 2055. These production horizons extend 34 years beyond the 1.5-degree Celsius threshold and 19 years beyond 2 degrees Celsius.
  • Federal coal already under lease will produce 25 more years, through 2041 or 20 years beyond the 1.5-degree threshold and 5 years beyond the 2-degree threshold.
  • Federal natural gas already under lease will produce 28 more years, through 2044. That is 23 years beyond the 1.5-degree threshold and 8 years beyond 2-degree threshold.

Importantly, each new federal lease and related infrastructure locks in fossil fuel dependence for at least a decade.

“Our analysis demonstrates the inconsistency of federal land and climate policy,” said Dustin Mulvaney of EcoShift Consulting. “These projections show that there is already more public fossil fuel under lease to last well beyond the point at which it can be safely burned.”

“Hopefully, we’ve heard the last time that Secretary Jewell or any other government official dismisses the keep it in the ground movement as naïve,” said Benjamin Schreiber, climate and energy program director for Friends of the Earth. ““This analysis makes it clear that not only does the government need to stop leasing but that much of the carbon that has already been leased must also stay in the ground.”

These new findings add to prior research estimating that ceasing federal fossil fuel leasing would remove up to 450 GtCO2e from the threat of development (EcoShift 2015) and prevent 100 million tons in annual emissions through 2030 (SEI 2016).

The American public owns nearly 650 million acres of federal public land and more than 1.7 billion acres of Outer Continental Shelf — and the fossil fuels beneath them. This includes federal public land, which makes up about a third of the U.S. land area, and oceans like Alaska’s Chukchi Sea, the Gulf of Mexico and the Eastern Seaboard. These places and the fossil fuels beneath them are held in trust for the public by the federal government; federal fossil fuel leasing is administered by the Department of the Interior.

Over the past decade, the combustion of federal fossil fuels has resulted in nearly a quarter of all U.S. energy-related emissions. An 2015 report by EcoShift Consulting, commissioned by the Center for Biological Diversity and Friends of the Earth, found that remaining federal oil, gas, coal, oil shale and tar sands that have not been leased to industry contain up to 450 billion tons of potential greenhouse gas pollution. As of earlier this year, 67 million acres of federal fossil fuel were already leased to industry, an area more than 55 times larger than Grand Canyon National Park containing up to 43 billion tons of potential greenhouse gas pollution.

Last year Sens. Merkley (D-Ore.), Sanders (I-Vt.) and others introduced the Keep It In the Ground Act (S. 2238) legislation to end new federal fossil fuel leases and cancel non-producing federal fossil fuel leases. Days later President Obama canceled the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, saying, “Because ultimately, if we’re going to prevent large parts of this Earth from becoming not only inhospitable but uninhabitable in our lifetimes, we’re going to have to keep some fossil fuels in the ground rather than burn them and release more dangerous pollution into the sky.”

Download the September “Keep It in the Ground” letter to President Obama from Friends of the Earth


Richard Dean Anderson, Rutger Hauer and Anthony Kiedis among celebrity names

LOS ANGELES, CA. – JULY 7, 2016 –  Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is asking big-box retailer Costco to stop its purchase and sale of salmon exported from the Faroe Islands until the Faroes bring the brutal and archaic mass slaughter of pilot whales and other cetaceans, known as the “grindadráp” or “grind,” to a grinding halt.

Actors Richard Dean Anderson (MacGyver), Eric Balfour (Haven), Rutger Hauer (Blade Runner), Ross McCall (24: Live Another Day), Cliff Simon (Stargate SG-1), Clive Standen (Vikings); actresses Shannen Doherty (Charmed and Beverly Hills, 90210), Perry Reeves (Entourage) and Red Hot Chili Peppers front man Anthony Kiedis have teamed with Sea Shepherd to send a letter to Costco CEO Craig Jelinek on from the organization’s founder, Captain Paul Watson.

The letter comes on the heels of yesterday’s news thata pod of 30-50 pilot whales was slaughtered in the first grindadráp (grind) of the year, on the island of Viðoy in the Danish Faroe Islands archipelago. (See full story here.)

The letter to Jelinek expresses concern that chain-store giant Costco is selling salmon farmed in the Faroe Islands, an archipelago of 18 isles in the North Atlantic, where hundreds of wild, migrating cetaceans are slaughtered each year.

Describing this massacre of ocean wildlife, the letter states that “entire pods of pilot whales and dolphins are driven by hunting boats to the shallow waters along the Faroe Islands…. Those cetaceans who are not herded far enough into the shallows will have a gaff hook stabbed into their blowholes and will be pulled ashore the rest of the way by rope. The panicked and thrashing whales or dolphins are then slowly sawed into behind their blowhole with a special Faroese hunting knife and killed by the severing of their spinal cords, as each animal is brutally slaughtered before the eyes of their family members. No member of the pod is spared, not even pregnant females or juveniles.”

Though Faroese whalers claim that the grind brings a quick and humane death, some of these highly intelligent and socially complex marine mammals take as long as four minutes to die, as the steely waters of the Faroes run red with blood.

The letter to Jelinek continues, “As a large and respected member of the corporate retail community, Costco should not condone these acts of brutality by economically supporting the Faroese salmon fishery. Costco can apply economic pressure to end the atrocity known as the ‘grind,’ a whale hunt that should be deemed illegal by the anti-whaling EU but yet is supported by Denmark, a part of the EU.  Mr. Jelinek, Costco, and you as its CEO, now have the opportunity to show your members and the international community that you represent a company of compassionate individuals who care about the fate of intelligent and sentient whales and dolphins as well as the oceanic eco-systems upon which they – and all life on Earth – depend for survival.”

Read full letter here.

The grind is an outdated practice as the Faroese people have one of the highest standards of living in all of Europe and access to the same foods found in grocery stores in Denmark. In addition, Faroese health officials have warned against consumption of the pilot whale meat, especially by children and pregnant women or women of childbearing age, because it is contaminated with neurotoxins such as mercury.

Though it is the slaughter of cetaceans by the Faroese that is opposed by Sea Shepherd, the organization is calling for a boycott of salmon exported from the Faroes until the senseless grind is permanently ended.

Said Watson of the Hollywood industry’s support: “These compassionate celebrities have offered their desperately needed voices to the pilot whales who were killed recently in the Faroe Islands and to those who are at risk each time they pass by Faroese shores. We must make it known that the blood of intelligent and social whales and dolphins stains every package of salmon from the Faroes. This archaic massacre of cetaceans, defended by the EU-member nation of Denmark, must be sunk economically. I encourage all concerned consumers to do their part by boycotting salmon from the Faroe Islands at Costco and wherever it is sold.”

Sea Shepherd urges supporters worldwide to contact Costco and ask the company to show that it does not support the slaughter of whales and dolphins by halting its purchase and sale of salmon exported from the Faroes.

Contact information for Costco is as follows:

Costco Wholesale Corporation

845 Lake Dr

Issaquah, Washington 98027

Seattle, WA 98124

Phone:(425) 313-8100

Email: and

A link to a sample letter can be found here.

The appeal to boycott Costco comes just weeks after Sea Shepherd released a 22-minute documentary short on YouTube shot by McCall, chronicling his experience in the Faroe Islands, along with a companion essay he published in the Huffington Post.

Since 1983, Sea Shepherd has sent ten campaigns to the Faroes, saving hundreds of whales and dolphins while dealing with the arrest of Sea Shepherd volunteers and the seizure of the organization’s boats.

Faroese law states it is illegal to interrupt the killing and illegal to sight a pod of whales and not report it. To further protect their beloved Grind from outside interference, this year the Faroese enacted laws that prohibit Sea Shepherd crew from entering their waters and wearing Sea Shepherd shirts on land.

This year, in response, Sea Shepherd Global announced Operation Bloody Fjords, a new operation targeting the massacre of pilot whales in the Faroe Islands.

With years of footage of this bloodshed, Operation Bloody Fjords will include culling together decades’ worth of photographic and video evidence to target the Grind in legal, political, commercial and economic arenas.  A full-length documentary feature will also be produced.


Industrial Agriculture and its Impact on the Environment

Bobbi Peterson Sustainability Writer
By Bobbi Peterson Sustainability Writer

Industrial agriculture, sometimes referred to as factory farming, is viewed by many farmers as a trend that is the antithesis of traditional farms. Whereas farms once served as friendly, community-centric co-ops that catered solely to the surrounding regions, industrial farms and plots are the exact opposite.

Source: Farm Sanctuary

Perhaps even more troubling, however, is industrial agriculture’s negative impact on our environment.

Air Pollution and Toxic Emissions

Look at a factory farming operation, and you’ll witness its negative environmental impact. Toxic emissions in the form of thick clouds of smoke fill the sky with hydrogen sulfide, methane, nitrous oxide and other gases. Sources currently report approximately 400 different air pollutants that are produced through modern industrial agriculture.

Source: Farm Sanctuary

Other common air pollutants include carbon dioxide, which has the potential to kill livestock and even humans when working in confined spaces, ammonia, various types of particulate matter and numerous endotoxins. As you can see, industrial-sized farms are incredibly dangerous for both the animals and those who work there.

Damage to Local Bodies of Water

It’s a well-known fact that chemical-based fertilizers and pesticide products are amongst the major contributors of water pollution in the U.S. today. According to studies completed in 2000 by the Environmental Protection Agency, industrial agriculture accounted for 48% of the pollution found in our nation’s rivers and streams, as well as 41% of the overall pollution in our lakes.

Farm Sanctuary

Factory farms consume enormous amounts of freshwater on a daily basis. This water is often left polluted, either through chemical contaminants or animal waste, so it is non-renewable. According to statistics, it takes nearly 1,600 gallons of water to produce one pound of U.S.-raised beef.

Energy Waste in Industrial Farming Equipment

Despite the increasing availability of environmentally friendly equipment and machinery, many factory farms still utilize industrial-grade hardware, vehicles and tools. This equipment contributes to the overall carbon footprint of the operation, and some of it can be undeniably dangerous to the human operator.

Compounding the problem even further is the issue of day-to-day fuel consumption, which can be incredibly costly given the fluctuating prices of gasoline in the U.S.

Some equipment, however, is manufactured specifically with fuel efficiency in mind. CAT’s D7E tractor, for example, features an electric drive system that is capable of providing 30 percent greater fuel economy than its predecessor.

Unhealthy Living Conditions and an Unhealthy Product

The animals raised on factory farms often live in unhealthy and, in some cases, downright barbaric conditions. This is evident through the frequent and numerous food recalls seen within the United States, many of which involve meat from modern industrial agriculture operations.

With billions of chickens, more than 100 million pigs and tens of millions of cows living in factory farms across the United States, it’s easy to see how the unhealthy living conditions of farm-raised animals could result in a tainted product that is unfit for human consumption. It happens so often that the Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports on dozens of salmonella outbreaks on a yearly basis, many of which go unnoticed until the initial symptoms are seen within the human population.

Farm Sanctuary

Eliminating Our Reliance on Industrial Agriculture

Apart from being counterproductive to the fundamental ideas and attitudes of many of our nation’s farmers, industrial agriculture is unquestionably damaging to the environment. By rebuking such operations, either by shopping at local farmers markets, maintaining community-based farms or even growing your own backyard gardens, you too can play a part in cleaning up unwanted corporations as well as the environment.