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83 posts from August 2011

August 24, 2011

Green Your Resume: Learn to Earn

GraduationWith green tech on the rise, companies are increasingly looking for environmentally aware new hires. This week's tips tell you how to beef up your eco-credentials to land the job. 

Tip #3: Get educated.

Real-world environmental experience is an essential piece of a green resume, but it can only take you so far in the job market. A graduate degree in, say, conservation biology or forestry will set you on the fast track to a greener career. Tuition too expensive? For a cost-effective alternative, look for similar programs at local community colleges. And for the ultimate eco-friendly academic experience, check out Sierra magazine's list of America's greenest colleges.

Tell us: How do you study the environment? 

August 23, 2011

Daily Roundup: August 23, 2011

Rocked: A magnitude 5.9 earthquake hit the East Coast this morning. NPR

Strange Exchange: The U.S. Department of Energy announced its plans to “lease” uranium from other countries. New York Times

Closed Off: Americans are less likely to care about climate change that's happening in faraway places, a new study says. Big Think

Ancient: Researchers have discovered an eel so old that they needed a new family, genus, and species to classify it. And it’s alive. Audubon

Back to the Grind: After being arrested for his Keystone XL Pipeline protest outside the White House, Bill McKibben is out of jail — and back at it. Grist 

--Mimi Dwyer

A Top 10 List for Every Occasion

Top 10 lists for everything It seems we weren't the only ones in a list-making mood when we recently ranked the nation's greenest colleges. Scientific American has put together a compendium of more than a dozen "top 10" lists for its special "cities" issue. The lists, pulled from a variety of sources, rate the best cities for green living, technology, health, and air quality.

Between our Cool Schools package and this eclectic bundle of lists, you should have all the information you need to chart a course to a green school in a great city. For example, our top school, the University of Washington, is in Seattle, which was one of Scientific American's top cities.

Of course, if your city or school didn't fare well, don't worry: There's something to be said for taking the path less traveled, especially if it's your mission to change your environment for the better.

--Della Watson

The Nonconformist Class

Going green may finally be "normal," but these colleges with eco-agendas remain miles from mainstream.

MAHARISHI UNIVERSITY OF MANAGEMENT Maharishi University of Management

The Beatles' onetime spiritual adviser, the late Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (sometimes called the "giggling guru"), founded Maharishi University of Management, in Fairfield, Iowa, as a place for "consciousness-based education." The school's buildings face east and have a central nucleus, and rooms are aligned with the sun's movement according to the strictures of an ancient Indian architectural style.

The dining hall serves food that's entirely vegetarian and organic. To graduate, each student is required to have maintained a plot on the campus's farm. Above, students celebrate the completion of their permaculture class with a feast made of ingredients harvested from their gardens.

Attending to the earth is hardwired into the school's signature (and trademarked!) practice, Transcendental Meditation. From it, says Robbie Gongwer, MUM's Sustainable Living Center's program developer, "students get this subjective experience of an interconnectedness to life."

Continue reading "The Nonconformist Class" »

Green Your Resume: Volunteer

Beach cleanup With green tech on the rise, companies are increasingly looking for environmentally aware new hires. This week's tips tell you how to beef up your eco-credentials to land the job. 

Tip #2: Give time.

Trying to enter a new field when you lack experience can be frustrating. Luckily, if you're looking for green work, it's easy to get your hands dirty by volunteering. The National Park Service, for one, is always looking for help, and Sierra Club Outings can help you find conservation projects all over the world. To stay local, consider connecting with your town's Sierra Club chapter to find out what kind of help it needs.

Tell us: How do you give back?

August 22, 2011

Daily Roundup: August 22, 2011

Keeping Their Cool: More than 150 people protesting the Keystone XL pipeline, including prominent climate activist Bill Mckibben, were arrested just outside the White House. 350.org

Open for Oil: The United States will sell the first offshore oil leases in the Gulf of Mexico since the BP spill last year. New York Times

Slick Campaign: The U.S. Department of Justice is investigating BP for misrepresenting the extent of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Huffington Post

Oi, Oi, Oi: Australia passed the world's first national CO2-offset legislation. Reuters

Step Up: Kandula the elephant used a stool to reach fruit, showing reasoning power previously undocumented in elephants. National Geographic

--Christa Morris

Forest in a Box: An Irrigation Device to Green the World

At first glance, the Groasis Waterboxx looks like a simple bucket. But it does something astounding: It grows trees in the desert.

The evaporation-proof irrigation device, which Popular Science named as its 2010 Innovation of the Year, protects and waters trees during their first year of growth. This allows their primary root to take hold in landscapes that have been dry for decades or even centuries.

During experiments in the Sahara, trees in Waterboxxes had a 90% survival rate. Almost all the trees without the boxes died.

Users fill the four-gallon boxes just once, and their tree is set for the year. The box is designed to create and contain condensation, which keeps the water from evaporating. A wick at the bottom drips about two ounces of water into the sapling's roots daily. And while the initial investment is a bit steep ($275 for 10 boxes), the device is reusable and has a life span of about a decade.

Continue reading "Forest in a Box: An Irrigation Device to Green the World" »

Green Fashion Monday: Gramicci's Laid-Back Plaid

Gramicci shirt On Fashion Monday, we highlight a hip, green fashion item. Got a stylish eco-friendly product to recommend? Tell us about it and look for it in an upcoming blog post.

Gramicci's a good spot for stylish but kick-back guys to look for their next look. This Kampong shirt ($27) is one of a few of the plaid (among other) options Gramicci makes that provides a flattering, comfortable fit, as well as the knowledge that your purchase hasn’t hurt Earth too much: It’s made of organic cotton and dyed via a low-impact process. Plus, Gramicci uses buttons made of recycled materials, incorporates hemp into many of its fashion offerings, and maintains a robust site about what you could be doing to help solve environmental issues.

--Avital Binshtock

Green Your Resume: Get Out!

Mountain biking With green tech on the rise, companies are increasingly looking for environmentally aware new hires. This week's tips tell you how to beef up your eco-credentials to land the job. 

Tip #1: Experience required.

You can't work to save the environment if you've never been outside. It's not uncommon for outfitters like Patagonia and groups like the NRDC to require relevant sports and outdoor experience for paid positions. Find an adventurous new hobby to build a personal connection to the environment. If you've got the time, try tackling a true adventure to make your outdoor experience stand out to potential employers. 

Tip #2: Volunteer.

Tip #3: Get edcuated.

Tip #4: Before you go . . .

Tell us: What's your outdoor experience?

August 19, 2011

Daily Roundup: August 19, 2011

This Planet May Be Your Last: Scientists studying possible scenarios regarding extraterrestrial life hypothesized that aliens may "preemptively destroy our civilization in order to protect other civilizations from us." Sierra Daily and Guardian

Beach Boys: In recent years, retreating sea ice has forced walruses to congregate on Alaskan shores in record numbers. New Scientist and Live Science

Case Closed: A mysterious orange "goo" that appeared along the shore of a remote village in Alaska has been identified as fungal spores. AP

Kangaroo Hop: Scientists sequenced the complete genome of the tammar wallaby. It's the third marsupial to have its DNA sequenced. Australian Life Scientist

New Moon: The moon may be 200 million years younger than previously thought, suggests a recent moon-rock analysis. Los Angeles Times and MSNBC

--Della Watson

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