Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Six O'Clock News: Earth Day Edition

Columbine Baby After the RainHas Earth Day become too commercial, causing green fatigue? Nah. Anything that gets people thinking "green" is a nice reminder, even if it is only the logos on NBC stations. Subliminal. It's all good.

  • Chrysler debuts an all-electric van in DC, a joint project with the Postal Service as the first electric fleet vehicle. No agreements are signed of yet, of course, with Chrysler being one week away from bankruptcy. Michigan officials from Rep. Gary Peters to Gov. Granholm are blasting the bankers latest offer to reduce debt as "unacceptable", the governor even sending letters to the big money people and setting up phone calls for further discussion...

    "Who knew when we were bailing out the banks we were setting them up to kill the auto industry,” Granholm said. “They need to think about the tens of thousands of workers whose lives hang in the balance because the banks want to get a better deal than what even the market will bear. It’s totally unacceptable.”

    President Obama was in Iowa today while American automakers were showing off their green cars in DC and meeting with members of Congress. The President reiterated his desire to see incentives for both automakers to produce and citizens to drive the "next generation of clean energy vehicles".

  • The DNews has a story on the greening of Detroit, and brings us this surprise: Detroit has jumped from 43rd to 31st in a ranking from SustainLane of cities that support the environment. Replacing blight with gardens and more pedestrian and bike friendly paths helped make the leap. Also from the story: Michigan has the third-most housing units that have been certified by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). Be proud.

    LEED Building Eastown
  • Another LEED building is going up in the Eastown area of Grand Rapids as I type, replacing a building the blew up from a gas leak over a year ago. Bazzani Associates has either built or retrofitted all sorts of green buildings in the Grand Rapids area.

  • The AP features green collar job training at Lansing Community College for this story on the nation's unemployed turning to the alternative energy field for new careers. The recession has caused a slowdown in hiring, but with the recovery package focusing on energy efficiency and renewables, things are expected to pick back up shortly.

  • This day was made for Ann Arbor, with their collection of hard-core enviros and their 90% recycling rate and whatnot, so it's only natural (ha ha) that they are holding all sorts of meeting and discussions and celebrations through this week. Check the link for some cool activities.

  • Bay City needs to step up its 20% recycle rate, or they will have to raise general household refuse fees. Cheaper to recycle than dump, sayeth the city officials.

  • The K-zoo Gazette tells of one lady who used to drive around in her pick-up and collect items to recycle, hauling them to a center in Portage. That turned into Kalamazoo County's curbside recycling programs that run today.

  • Leave it to the Grand Rapids Press to focus on how local churches approach Earth Day and environmental causes. Yeah, we still got it, whatever it is.

    Go hug your trees. Happy Earth Day everyone.