A German City Has Banned Single-Serve Coffee Pods and Plastic Water Bottles

Coffee capsules have been taking hard hits in recent times, from a “Kill the K-Cup” video that went viral on Youtube last year to remarks by John Sylvan, one of the founders of Keurig’s K-Cup, expressing remorse at ever having invented the now ubiquitous coffee pod.

Yet the latest news on the coffee front is perhaps the most drastic: In January, the German city of Hamburg announced a ban on the purchase and use of coffee pods in all government-run buildings and institutions across the city.

“Capsule-coffee is expensive and the pods don’t have a good ecological balance sheet,” said Jan Dube, media spokesperson for the Ministry of the Environment and Energy. “They have lots of packaging compared to the small amount of coffee and we just decided we don’t want to buy those products anymore with public money.”

According to Dube, total consumption in 2014 in Germany was roughly three billion coffee capsules, which is estimated to equate to about 64 million pods consumed by Hamburg’s 1.75 million inhabitants. The number is concerning, said Dube, because the capsules’ composition of plastic and aluminum is so hard to recycle. There is also a lot of packaging for just a little bit of coffee. Dube estimates that there are roughly three grams of packaging for every six grams of coffee.

For full article by Marie Doezema on VICE please click here.

The mercury doesn’t lie: We’ve hit a troubling climate change milestone

Record Low Sea Ice Cover

Record Low Sea Ice Cover

Thursday, while the nation debated the relative size of Republican genitalia, something truly awful happened. Across the northern hemisphere, the temperature, if only for a few hours, apparently crossed a line: it was more than two degrees Celsius above “normal” for the first time in recorded history and likely for the first time in the course of human civilization.

That’s important because the governments of the world have set two degrees Celsius as the must-not-cross red line that, theoretically, we’re doing all we can to avoid. And it’s important because most of the hemisphere has not really had a winter. They’ve been trucking snow into Anchorage for the start of the Iditarod; Arctic sea ice is at record low levels for the date; in New England doctors are already talking about the start of “allergy season.”

This bizarre glimpse of the future is only temporary. It will be years, one hopes, before we’re past the two degrees mark on a regular basis. But the future is clearly coming much faster than science had expected. February, taken as a whole, crushed all the old monthly temperature records, which had been set in … January. January crushed all the old monthly temperature records, which had been set in … December.

Read the full article by Bill McKibben on the Bostonglobe.com website.

WOW, best alternative to plugin night light – SnapRays Guide Light is a unique plug-n-play LED (Video)

Snaprays Guide Light

Not a lot to here, just a few key points and a video. This is a no brainer really: They look like a regular outlet cover, but have double as an elegant night light. They install in seconds (watch the video below) They use literally pennies of electricity No wiring needed, they automatically ‘clip’ into power […]

The Tar Sands Bubble

Open Pit Strip Mining of Oil in Alberta Tar Sands

by Brian Palmer, originally published by Onearth  | OCT 7, 2014 The Canadian tar sands industry has seen better days. Energy giant Statoil announced last week that it would postpone a major mining project in Alberta for at least three years. It was just the latest in a string of major setbacks for tar sands […]

The Next Generation Asks: Why Not Act on Climate Change? (Video)

Young People Demanding Action

Young people worldwide are demanding answers on climate change. Watch their auditions and add your voice. Thousands heard the call from all over the planet and while it wasn’t easy, we’ve been able to select eight inspiring young people to attend the United Nations Climate Summit in New York on September 23 and ask “Why […]

What is the single best thing we can do for our health? (Video)

What is the single best thing we can do for our health?

Well, the answer really is very (very) simple and easy to do. A Doctor-Professor answers the old question “What is the single best thing we can do for our health” in a completely new way. Dr. Mike Evans is founder of the Health Design Lab at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, an Associate Professor […]

Toxic Hot Seat (Video) – Ineffective Flame Retardants and our Health

Toxic Flame Retardents

I have written about this topic before in an early post, Toxic flame retardants: In our homes, our dust, our lives, but this HBO special covers this topic in much greater detail and packages it in video ;-) I believe it is very important for everyone to understand the level of chemical experimentation that is happening […]