New principles to create water-wise cities

12 October 2016, Brisbane – To overcome the problems that are leading to pressure on water resources in urban areas, and to an increasing number of drought and flooding crises, the International Water Association (IWA) launches the Principles for Water-Wise Cities at the 2016 World Water Congress and Exhibition in Brisbane.

“Cities are rapidly expanding and water resources are under increasing pressure. We need to find ways to do more with less,” says Corinne Trommsdorff, programme manager for the Cities of the Future Program at the International Water Association. “The Principles will be used to bring people together for resilient city planning and to guide the urban water revolution needed in cities of the future,” says Trommsdorff.

The IWA developed the 17 principles to help city leaders ensure that everyone in their cities has access to safe water and sanitation, that their cities are resilient to floods, droughts and the challenges of growing water scarcity, and that water is integrated in city planning to provide increased livability, efficiencies, and a sense of place for urban communities.

“Cities are rapidly expanding and water resources are under increasing pressure. We need to find ways to do more with less,” says Corinne Trommsdorff, programme manager for the Cities of the Future Program at the International Water Association. “The Principles will be used to bring people together for resilient city planning and to guide the urban water revolution needed in cities of the future,” says Trommsdorff.
The 17 principles are grouped into four categories:

1.Regenerative water services: including replenishing water bodies and their ecosystems, reducing the amount of water and energy used, recovering energy, nutrients and other materials from water, and increased efficiencies by integrating water services with other services.

2.Water sensitive urban design: including designing urban spaces to reduce flood risks, enhance livability with visible water, and modify and adapt urban materials to minimise environmental impact.

3.Basin connected cities: including planning to secure water resources and mitigate drought, protect the quality of water resources and prepare for extreme events.

Water-wise communities: including empowering citizens, increasing professional awareness of water and enabling policy makers to take water-wise action.

4.Water-wise communities: including empowering citizens, increasing professional awareness of water and enabling policy makers to take water-wise action.

“The floods that hit Brisbane in 2011 and 2013 and the Millennium Drought have reshaped our city’s relationship with water, highlighting the importance of managing water at all stages of the water cycle. To ensure Brisbane meets the challenges of an increasing population, and to respond to our changing climate, Brisbane City Council is embracing the International Water Association’s Principles for Water Wise Cities” said Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Graham Quirk.

The cities of Gothenburg, Kunshan, Lyon, Melbourne Metropolitan Area, Sydney, Shenzhen, Xi’an, Dakar, Amsterdam and Brisbane are becoming the first cities to endorse the IWA Principles at their launch during the World Water Congress (Brisbane, 09-14 October). Amsterdam and Copenhagen are endorsing the Principles through their water authorities. The companies Arup, Arcadis, Veolia, Ramboll, Schneider, Suez, Xylem will be endorsing the principles at the Congress.
The cities of Gothenburg, Kunshan, Lyon, Melbourne Metropolitan Area, Sydney, Shenzhen, Xi’an, Dakar, Amsterdam and Brisbane are becoming the first cities to endorse the IWA Principles at their launch during the World Water Congress (Brisbane, 09-14 October). Amsterdam and Copenhagen are endorsing the Principles through their water authorities. The companies Arup, Arcadis, Veolia, Ramboll, Schneider, Suez, Xylem will be endorsing the principles at the Congress.
The cities of Gothenburg, Kunshan, Lyon, Melbourne Metropolitan Area, Sydney, Shenzhen, Xi’an, Dakar, Amsterdam and Brisbane are becoming the first cities to endorse the IWA Principles at their launch during the World Water Congress (Brisbane, 09-14 October). Amsterdam and Copenhagen are endorsing the Principles through their water authorities. The companies Arup, Arcadis, Veolia, Ramboll, Schneider, Suez, Xylem will be endorsing the principles at the Congress.
The 17 principles for water-wise cities encourage collaboration, underpinned by a shared vision, so that local governments, urban professionals, and individuals can actively prepare and find solutions to urban water management challenges.

The complete list of the 17 principles for water-wise cities is available here: http://www.iwa-network.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/IWA_Principles_Water_Wise_Cities.pdf

Source: The International Water Association http://www.iwa-network.org

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Wildlife Works Launches CODE REDD Campaign to Save the World’s Threatened Forests

Emergency campaign calls for immediate action from the private sector to reduce their carbon footprint while supporting innovative forest protection projects.
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As corporations recognize their responsibility to do all they can to reduce their carbon footprint by lowering emissions and offsetting the rest, the CODE REDD campaign aims to make it easy and compelling for corporations to pledge to buy REDD (Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation) carbon offsets.  Which is why Wildlife Works announced the launch of CODE REDD, an emergency action campaign to save the world’s wild forests using private sector financing within the Voluntary Carbon Market.

The Campaign will also ensure that those offsets are generated by specific high quality forest protection projects that have proven they can protect threatened forests while at the same time providing unprecedented sustainable development opportunities to local forest communities.

“The goal of the CODE REDD Campaign is to dramatically increase the demand for REDD project carbon offsets now.  With increased demand, REDD can scale to overcome the massive threat to the worlds forests and make a significant contribution to mitigating climate change.” said Mike Korchinsky, Founder and CEO of Wildlife Works and the creator of the CODE REDD Campaign.

Wild forests are disappearing at the alarming rate of 13 million hectares per year (FAO 2010) and deforestation accounts for an estimated 17% of total annual global greenhouse gas emissions (UNIPCC 2007). The effects of deforestation are having devastating impacts on people and wildlife throughout the world and are threatening the resources humans need for survival. Climate change experts widely agree that climate stability cannot be achieved without the conservation of the world’s remaining forests.

“Reducing your carbon footprint is not a UN obligation. It’s a global responsibility. It is time for the private sector to show innovation and leadership and do something REDD,” said Korchinsky.

Source: Wildlife Works

What are your clothes made of?

As reported once in the Associated Press:
Styles in fashion are ephemeral and fickle. Those acid-wash jeans, M.C. Hammer pants, and DayGlo T-shirts you loved in middle school have long since reached “out” status (though the harem pants we saw on the Spring 2007 runways look a bit Hammer Time to us). The skinny jeans you love right now will one day follow their fate.

Though trends come and go, the clothes themselves stick around. To make room for new fashions, the average American throws away about 68 pounds of clothing and textiles per year. Mother Earth isn’t that fond of polyester, and is quite warm enough already, thank you very much.

On top of that, producing new clothes out of traditionally grown cotton taxes the environment with chemical fertilizers and pesticides; energy and chemicals are required to manufacture synthetic materials. The all-American combo of a cotton T-shirt and a pair of denim jeans, for instance, requires 1 pound of fertilizers and pesticides.
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But the fashion industry is beginning to recognize its impact, as well as consumers’ desire for more eco-friendly fashion. An increasing number of independent designers and boutiques specialize in eco-conscious fashion that is more hip than hippy.
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Even big companies like H&M, Urban Outfitters, and Uniqlo, which sell really cheap, trendy, and easily disposable clothing (a.k.a. “fast clothes”) are taking steps to be more eco-friendly. One way is by using alternative materials that reduce post-consumer waste and pollution.

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REUSE, RECYCLE, AND WORK IT!

The most ecological materials are the ones already lying around. But don’t worry — this isn’t like getting your sister’s tattered hand-me-downs or playing dress-up with leftover wrapping paper. Designers are creatively repurposing existing materials, making purses out of candy wrappers or totally new clothes out of discarded fabric and garments. According to the Council for Textile Recycling, the industry keeps 2.5 billion pounds of post-consumer textile product waste from entering landfills every year.

That is why the clothing line RevengeIs commits to producing Tees in the USA. As their owner states:

Everything on our website is conceived, born, and raised in the fine metropolitan city of Los Angeles. Our products are free-range, organic, vegetarian, and never given any antibiotics or hormones. Which is pretty easy to do… because they’re t-shirts.

Our Tees are made from Organic Cotton and Bionic Yarn.
Can any of your other clothes say that? Some super-smart folks convert plastic bottles into fibers that are woven into fabric. They use awesome technology or elf dust – either way it’s pretty amazing and we love them.

BUY ORGANIC

Going organic doesn’t just apply to what you eat. Now you can buy clothes made out of organic cotton, grown without fertilizers and pesticides. Less than 1 percent of the world’s annual
cotton production is organic, but that’s certain to increase as more mainstream stores carry organic clothing and customers demand it. H&M is already producing an organic cotton line.
 RevengeIs Clothing https://www.revengeis.com

PANDA SNACK

Previously known as panda food, bamboo is also an all-purpose material used to make flooring, furniture, housewares — and clothes. For good reason: It grows as many as 12 inches a day, making it a highly sustainable and renewable resource that doesn’t require pesticides. Clothes made out of bamboo are incredibly durable, soft, biodegradable and antibacterial. (And pandas will highly approve.)

JIFFY POP

Wearing corn doesn’t have to mean being wrapped in popcorn garlands like a Christmas tree. Ingeo is a man-made fiber whose raw material is corn. Given that corn is easily and abundantly grown annually, Ingeo is highly renewable. And when you’re ready to get rid of your tired threads made of Ingeo, you’ll be comforted in knowing that they’ll be biodegradable, giving back to the Earth rather than burdening it.

NOT JUST FOR SUSHI

There’s no need to go to the spa for your seaweed-wrap treatment: Now you can wear seaweed all day. SeaCell is a fabric made from seaweed and cellulose. Like bamboo and corn, seaweed is highly renewable and, when made into fabric, releases minerals and vitamins such as calcium, magnesium and vitamin E that the skin absorbs. Literally, you can look good and feel good.

WHEN THE SODA GOES FLAT

A plastic dress? No, it’s not the mod sixties making a comeback. EcoSpun is a fabric made of 100 percent post-consumer plastic from soda bottles, water bottles and other beverage and household containers. Clothes made from EcoSpun — often used in fleece jackets — are soft and durable. The company says it’s able to keep almost 3 billion plastic soda bottles out of landfills each year, saving over half a million barrels of oil and eliminating 400,000 tons of harmful emissions. So recycle your soda bottle; you could be wearing it one day.
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Sunday, May 27, 2007

Overstock.com and Carbonfund.org Partner to Launch Carbon-Neutral Shipping Program for All Worldstock Products

Overstock.com, Inc announced carbon-neutral shipping for every purchase made from its Worldstock Fair Trade inventory, effective immediately. This sustainability effort establishes Overstock.com as one of the largest online retailers to take responsibility for the environmental impact of its product shipping program. Through a partnership with the Carbonfund.org Foundation, a leading nonprofit climate solutions organization, Overstock.com will mitigate the carbon dioxide emissions produced by the trucks delivering items purchased from Worldstock Fair Trade by funding third-party validated carbon reduction projects like reforestation. This offer is free to the customer. Now, in time for Earth Day’s 41st anniversary, Worldstock Fair Trade purchases are supporting this important environmental initiative, as well as artisans around the globe. To learn more visit www.overstock.com/sustainability

“Overstock.com recognizes that we all have to take responsibility for preventing climate change, and as a major retailer its positive actions will have a huge impact,” said Eric Carlson, President of Carbonfund.org. “Through this commitment, Overstock.com is leading by example by investing in a low-carbon future for everyone. We’re thrilled to partner with Overstock.com on this exciting program.”

Founded in 2001, Worldstock Fair Trade is Overstock.com’s socially responsible department for products handcrafted by artisans from developing nations and rural areas of the USA.  It carries handcrafted products from artisans in over 60 countries and between 60 and 70 percent of the cost is returned to the artisans. To date, Overstock.com has returned more than $60 million to Worldstock’s artisan suppliers.

“This carbon-neutral shipping program is in addition to other measures the company has taken to recognize consumer demand for environmentally sustainable business practices.  Other measures include ride sharing and corporate recycling programs,” said Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne. “We recognize CO2 emissions are only one component of our operational impact, and we are working to reduce environmental impacts across our entire supply chain.”

Waste Water Treatment And Its Effects

Just over 70% of our planet comprises of water, yet with the rise in world-wide population, the risk of running low on water may not always be a third-world issue. To combat this, effective sewage treatment and screening is of paramount importance.

Water is Seen As An Unending Commodity

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From sanitation, straight through to cooking; water is essential to our everyday function. It is the most vital nutrient for our bodies second only to oxygen, and is in constant need of replenishment due to loss from sweat and urination, among others. It is estimated that a human, on average, won’t survive longer than five days without access to water, yet three quarters of the water on Earth is undrinkable.

3% Of Water On Earth is Fresh Water

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97% of the water on Earth is salt water which, as we all know, is undrinkable; meaning there is far less water available then one may have assumed. Add to this the fact that the remainder of the Earth’s supply is frozen, or deep underground; and the issue becomes even more concerning. Insufficient screening and separation of fresh water found in developing countries results in lethal bacteria and organisms taking the lives of approximately 5,000 children each day. Add to this the danger of climate change, and we have an even darker vision before us.

Turning Waste Into Clean Water

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The EU’s Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive works to protect humans, plants, animals and the environment by treating domestic, industrial and rain water that is waste contaminated. Continued research, along with the screening implementation and separation techniques means that even harmful products as miniscule as 0.75 can be removed from our water.

Companies such as Environmental Screening and Separation now utilise innovative equipment to treat our water, and are still striving to find new processes to treat our waste water. Through recycling our water, we are one step closer to solving the present and future water crisis.