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  • 29 Jan 2016 10:48 AM | Anonymous

    AZ Thrives is a business conference for Arizona’s minority and small business leaders that is focused on the concept of the circular economy. The event aims to not only educate Arizona business leaders on sustainability in business, but also to create change agents through meaningful connections within the community. AZ Thrives offers panels from leaders who are incorporating sustainability concepts into their own businesses through production, supply chain, human resources and marketing strategies. The discussion also highlights how to become a subcontractor for businesses who are already implementing sustainability strategies.

    Join Green Chamber President, Brian Kocour, at this event!

    $75 Registration Required - Register at this link

    Monday, February 22, 2016

    9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

    Phoenix Convention Center, North Building

    100 N. 3rd St, Phoenix, Arizona 85004

  • 04 Aug 2014 10:26 PM | Julia Wright (Administrator)

    Valley of the Sun Clean Cities Coalition
    Arizona’s Laws on HOV Lanes for Plug-In Hybrids


    Save the Date -- August 28th 8:00 AM - 11:00 AM
    Get the full story on Arizona’s laws on HOV cloud plates and how they recently opened eligibility to plug-in hybrids. The popular eligible vehicles will be on display with full specifications presented by the vendors including Chevy Volt / Ford C-MAX Energi & Ford Fusion Energi. ADOT will also detail the scope and operation of the new HOV plates and how to apply.


    You will come away with the complete story and all the possible hybrid plug-in choices available, dont be caught dealing with the parts and pieces of this important breakthrough in vehicle and HOV availability.
    (Honda hybrid plug-in & Prius plug-in are not offered in Arizona)


    Meeting Details
    Thursday, August 28, 2014 8:00 AM - 11:00 AM, a Continental Breakfast will be served at 8:00 AM.


    Location
    ASU SkySong, 1475 N. Scottsdale Rd, Suite 200 | Scottsdale, Arizona 85257  Enter the North Building (Parking is on the far north and west side)

    R.S.V.P Your Seat Now For more details or to RSVP please email brianna@cleanairaz.org

  • 30 May 2014 9:01 AM | Julia Wright (Administrator)

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    Contact: Kathy Maguire, GRI, ABR®, GREEN

                 5725 N. 20th Place, Phoenix, AZ 85016

                 (602) 418-4565

     

    LOCAL REALTOR® ACHIEVES NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®
    GREEN DESIGNATION

    May 2014

    PHOENIX, AZ – Kathy Maguire with DPR Realty, LLC, has been awarded the National Association of REALTORS®’ [NAR’s] GREEN Designation, the only green real estate professional designation recognized by NAR.

    Maguire achieved this prestigious designation after completing 18 hours of course work designed specifically for REALTORS®. The courses were created in collaboration with a multidisciplinary team of industry experts from across the country, ensuring designees gain comprehensive knowledge of green homes and buildings and issues of sustainability in relation to real estate.

    More specifically, Maguire was trained in understanding what makes a property green, helping clients evaluate the cost/benefits of green building features and practices, distinguishing between industry rating and classification systems, listing and marketing green homes and buildings, discussing the financial grants and incentives available to homeowners, and helping consumers see a property’s green potential.

    Living green is about making healthy choices that are also environmentally friendly,” said Maguire, who “walks the eco-walk” in her everyday life on her small citrus farm in central Phoenix. She farms organically and sells the fruits of her labor at farmers markets on Saturday mornings during citrus season. “I try to live by the motto, ‘Everything stays on the farm,’ so I have a composting system and try to limit what goes into landfills from our property.”

    Maguire went a step further in her commitment to a sustainable lifestyle when she recently acquired a Tesla electric car. “Now I can drive my clients to look at homes all day long, not burn gas, and know my car will not be emitting tailpipe pollutants,” said Maguire.

    As an NAR GREEN designee, Maguire has gained the knowledge and the tools necessary to become a trusted green resource for metropolitan Phoenix. For more information about Kathy Maguire, please visit www.kathymaguire.com or e-mail kmaguire4@cox.net.

     

    For more information about NAR’s Green Designation, visit www.greenresourcecouncil.org

  • 11 Feb 2014 8:24 AM | Julia Wright (Administrator)

    Preserving the planet starts with what's on your fork. Why you should care & how will eating healthy help the planet? Secrets revealed.

    What this Kickstarter Will Do

    This Kickstarter will help us spread important information to millions of people about what we are eating, what's in our food, where is our food sourced and how that all impacts our health and health of the planet. 

    What Are You Eating & Why Should You Care is...  (Read more and see the video here).


  • 08 Dec 2013 9:09 PM | Julia Wright (Administrator)
    Humans are odd creatures.  The more important a thing, the more we take it for granted.  While many Arizonians have opinions on Hollywood romances and sport team victories (go ASU), most don’t value the critical fundamentals: access to healthy air, drinkable water, and maintaining access to basic needs.  We don’t , that is, until it is taken away.

    It is a core tenant of Arizona life that we live in a desert.  A core tenant of a desert is limited access to water.  Despite this, cumulatively, we waste millions of gallons of purified drinking water a year.  Some runs off our sidewalks, some down our drains, some is explicitly linked with other things we waste, like fuel and electricity.  In partnership with Arizona Forward, The Green Chamber supports the education of the recent the Arizona Republic water management in their series titled, “The New Arizona” which identifies strategic plans for a more prosperous and sustainable state.  The steps advocated in the articles represent a clear call to action to ensure both our economic prosperity, as well as meeting the simple necessity of having water to drink when you need it.

    Full Article
  • 21 May 2013 4:45 AM | Anonymous
    We hope you have joined us at some of our recent events, including Green Drinks the first Tuesday of each month at the Firesky Resort and the smoking hot networking event last week at Cartel Coffee with the Green Chamber Board.

    You may have noticed we have increased the frequency of our communication to keep you informed of what we’re up to Advancing a Sustainable Arizona Economy. 

    We genuinely want to provide content that is helpful to you and your business and we encourage your input, feedback and comments on our Facebook page.

    We believe inviting and being open to input and comments is essential in serving our Members and other subscribers. Our openness also invites comments like these:

    Who are you people? Are you promoting that climate change is happening (it isn’t) and that the government will fix it (they won’t)? Take me off your list!

    In my younger days long, long ago, that would have initiated a series of heated emails and perhaps even a final phone call before hitting the delete button. Today, we simply archived the email address.

    My business partner and fellow Business Development Director for the Green Chamber of Commerce, Andrew Kolikoff, is a former Professor at a New York university, non-profit director for an organization focused on sustainability and has decades of experience in the arena of sustainable construction.

    In comparison to Andrew, I can spell G-R-E-E-N if I am allowed to buy a couple of vowels.

    Andrew could go toe-to-toe with anyone on the scientific facts regarding climate change, why it is proven fact, why we must do something about it and numerous strategies we should pursue!

    Here are some facts to consider:
    • Average global temperatures increased by about 1 degree Celsius over the 20th century.

    • The US contains only 5 percent of the world's population, but contributes 22 percent of the world's carbon emissions.

    • 15 percent of carbon emissions come from deforestation and land use change.

    • The Golden Toad is thought to be the first species to go extinct because of climate change.

    • Personal cars and trucks in the United States emit 20 percent of the United States' carbon emissions.

    • Air conditioning and heating account for almost half of electricity use in the average American home.

    • Climate change is linked to stronger hurricanes, more drought and increased coral deaths from bleaching.

    • Climate change is linked to an increase in disease-carrying pests that lead to the increased spread of diseases such as dengue fever, malaria, lyme disease and West Nile virus.
    Facts reported by The Nature Conservancy

    Andrew would also make a strong case for government’s role in affecting change, which is a debate for another day! The debate with the gentleman who commented above would accomplish nothing, so why bother?

    I suggest the reason to bother is because doing nothing, simply because some people choose to reject the facts, is surrendering our responsibilities to pass along a sustainable planet to our children and grandchildren.

    So, let’s not surrender.

    Get more involved and join us in Advancing a Sustainable Arizona Economy. Join the Green Chamber. Attend our events. Add your voice to our Public Policy Committee. Help us shape a Green Jobs Plan for Arizona that will sustain people, planet and profits!

    Let’s take action on passing a healthier planet to our heirs.

    But first, let’s dumb green down.

    Reject the scientific facts. Reject the logical arguments. Reject the role of government.

    But do deal with this:

    During the 20th and 21st centuries, we have done more to adversely impact our planet than the cumulative impact of the previous three millenniums combined.

    It’s time to stop doing more damage. It’s time to start reversing the damage we have done.

    Anything less isn’t dumbed down. 

    It’s just dumb!

    Appreciate Your Comments on 
    The Green Chamber of Greater Phoenix 

    Bill Merrow is a Principal at Synergy Sales and Marketing and Business Development Director for The Green Chamber of Greater Phoenix.

    He can be reached at bill.merrow@synergysm.com or bill@thegreenchamber.org or 602.821.7340.
  • 09 May 2013 6:53 PM | Anonymous
    What's Your View of the 
    Sustainability Implications? 

    Phoenix has seen its share of roller coaster rides in the housing market. 

    While many enjoyed the ride to the top with the extreme highs of the 2005-2007 era, the ride back down beginning with the single family market drop in September, 2006 to the bottoming out of the market in 2009 was far less fun.

    As the Phoenix housing market is finally recovering and on an upswing, the toll it has taken and the resurgence are nothing short of remarkable.

    Construction jobs dropped like a rocket in 2009 due to the housing market, but we are finally seeing jobs in general start to gain momentum on a positive track. 

    Combined with low interest rates for mortgages, we are definitely seeing traction and gains in housing.

    Listings have dropped more than 74% since 2011 for homes under $200,000, and prices have increased due to the demand. 

    That segment of the market saw 50% cash purchases at one point in time, mainly being purchased by investors. Since that time, investor purchases have declined and investors have gone elsewhere in pursuit of better investments.

    Foreclosures in Phoenix have dropped significantly and are now at a more normal level. 

    Short sales and notices of default have declined as well, as more short sales are being closed and for the first time are priced less than foreclosures.

    Competition for foreclosures at Trustees Sales has pushed prices higher, which is why investors have left the Phoenix market.

    Resale median home prices have risen from $115,000 March, 2011 to $170,000 for March, 2013. That's a 67% increase, furthering the discussion that the housing market in Phoenix has rebounded with gusto!


    What should we expect for the future in Phoenix?

    According to the experts, there will be a housing shortage. By 2040, Phoenix is expected to grow by 2.6 million, which averages out to 96,000 annual growth in population. 

    According to Michael Orr, Director of ASU's Real Estate Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice, there won't be enough homes for this growth. Orr and Mark Stapp, ASU, Master of Science in Real Estate, both spoke at a recent event in Phoenix about the Future Population & Housing for Phoenix.

    New home subdivisons cannot maintain this pace, in part due to undocumented, skilled laborers that may not be returning to Arizona. 

    New home construction is lagging demand and some developers are starting lotteries again. New build subdivisions will select a buyer that does not have a home to sell over a buyer who does have a home to sell. 

    Builders are buying large tracts of land, but some are not building immediately, instead waiting for prices to rise. Some builders are beginning to build on the outlying areas of Phoenix, mimicking the 2004-2006 housing market.

    If you are looking for the mysterious shadow Inventory - there really isn't any. Economists at title companies, commercial realtors and Orr state that banks are not holding inventory in anticipation of risng prices.

    Expecting a load of foreclosures will hit the market isn't realistic. With our very low levels of inventory, any type of home listed for sale would be a welcome relief for the pent up demand we are experiencing.

    Demographically speaking ... what might our housing future look like? 

    In a word, the future of the Phoenix housing market looks bright with buyers buying closer to mass transit and prices and equity returning. 

    Phoenix is once again on the rise!

    Thanks to Jan Green for sharing this article. Jan is a REALTOR®, CDPE, SFR, EcoBroker and CIAS with RE/MAX Excalibur Realty in Scottsdale and a Member of The Green Chamber of Greater Phoenix. Jan is also Committee Chair of the Residential Green Building Committee (RGBC) of the U. S. Green Building Council, Arizona Chapter. Learn more at www.RelocatingtoScottsdale.com and www.GotGreen.info or contact Jan at jan@gotgreen.info or 602.620.2699.
      
    Let's hear from you! Considering our local housing market is a key driver of our local economy, we invite you to share your thoughts on what we all can do to manage growth in a more sustainable manner.

    What's Your View of the 
    Sustainability Implications? 
  • 06 May 2013 8:52 AM | Deleted user

    Much of the reluctance to support renewable power has centered on cost and intermittency. The discussion of cost is becoming more and more moot as costs continue to fall but intermittency continues to plague the industry as a whole. Imagine a power resource that used no fuel, used no water and produced power in a non-intermittent, reliable fashion. That type of energy is exactly what the utilities would like so they can better manage their portfolio and not have to hedge fuel and water pricing into the future.  The environmental community would likely support it as well due to its sustainable qualities. The next question that needs to be asked is, whether it is truly sustainable? That is, can the power be delivered in a cost effective manner?

    Water is often the forgotten element of sustainability because it is always available to those in the Western world and continues to be a cheap commodity. In the desert southwest and in many other areas around the world it is becoming a more pressing concern as we deplete the aquifers more quickly than they can be recharged. Power generators like nuclear, coal, gas and solar thermal utilize steam to generate power and use considerable amounts of water for every electron that is generated. To put the amount of water utilized into context, if a power plant was to generate enough power for approximately 100,000 average US households, about 700 million gallons of water would be utilized on an annual basis. Given that we reside in the desert southwest where water is at a premium, one must ask if this is the best use of our resources?

    It would appear that if a resource capable of addressing all these concerns existed it could be considered the Holy Grail of energy. Unlike the Holy Grail there need not be further discussion about whether there is such an energy resource. EnviroMission is developing the Solar Tower, a technology capable of delivering cost competitive energy in a reliable, non-intermittent manner. It does this while consuming no water or any fuel.

    The fundamental operating principles are illustrated below:


    Solar Tower technology uses solar insolation (indirect) and radiation (direct) to heat air beneath a large translucent collector (greenhouse) that in turn creates a constant flow of air to drive turbines at the base of the tower. The collector is open at the periphery allowing air to continuously flow from the outside toward the middle of the collector. One of the many strengths of the Solar Tower technology is its ability to generate utility scale electricity reliably throughout the day and at night without the use of water. The collector has the ability if desired to capture more than enough fresh water to provide for all on-site needs via its large collector area.

    The first Solar Tower in the US is planned for Arizona and is scheduled to commence construction late in 2014. The Solar Tower would not only generate power with all the desired characteristics but will also generate significant economic benefits to the State and La Paz County; the region the project is sited. It is expected approximately 1500 workers will be employed during construction with a further 40 being employed on an ongoing basis.

    Solar Tower development is coming and when delivered, it will provide the type of energy that the often disparate factions of the industry could unanimously support.

    Chris Davey, EnviroMission

  • 10 Apr 2013 11:10 AM | Deleted user

    It’s common knowledge that America’s largest import is oil, but do you know what’s second? Hint: it’s a commodity used for tires, hoses and thousands of household products.

    The United States imports 100% of it’s natural rubber from the Hevea tree grown in nations like Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. Once upon a time, there was enough rubber to supply all of our needs, thanks to imported natural rubber and synthetics made from petroleum, but like with everything else in the global economy, the need for rubber is being stretched beyond it’s supply.

    Enter Arizona, the home of a native Sonoran Desert plant called guayule (why-you-ly). A hundred years ago, it was touted by names like Edison, Firestone, Ford and Rockefeller as the panacea for our nation’s rubber shortage. Ironically, it even appeared on the front page of the New York Times on December 7th 1941, touted as a backstop supply of rubber in case of Japanese aggression. Shortly thereafter, over 25,000 acres was put into production as part of the war effort.

    Unfortunately, like every other time guayule has cropped up, worldwide prices or geopolitics have conspired to cut it down before long-term research could be done--until now.

    In 2009, a Casa Grande company, PanAridus, started acquiring the largest privately owned germ plasm bank of guayule on the planet, marrying the sciences of genetics and bio-agriculture to making guayule profitable for farmers to grow and for tire companies to use in the manufacturing process.

    Guayule and Arizona are a match made for a planet with finite resources. Not only does the plant use about half the water as conventional crops like cotton or alfalfa, but it’s grown on unproductive and arid land. One hundred percent of the plant is used, either for rubber, resins or as cellulosic biomass.

    With consistent testing in hand, PanAridus is now growing more guayule per acre than can be grown by tapping the Hevea tree, and this past autumn for the first time in history, guayule samples were publicly offered to be tested against ‘traditional’ rubber sources that have been used to make tires, tubing and medical supplies.

    Will 100 years be worth the wait? With an exploding Asian market, the possibilities for a center for the $300 billion tire industry being sited in Arizona look positive. PanAridus is currently looking at sites for a test facility in rural Arizona that will allow it to grow its patented strains in large enough quantities for tire companies not just to test its purity, but to actually blend it into the tires they sell all around the world.

    Blending rural agronomy with genetics to grow crops like guayule will give us key strategic advantages we need not only to create jobs at home and increase profits at the farm gate, but also to create a ‘best practices’ sustainable industry that can be exported around the world.

    Learn more at www.PanAridus.com

  • 03 Apr 2013 3:19 PM | Deleted user

    In January 2013, the Water Environment Federation (WEF), a premier water quality professionals association, made a subtle but fundamental change in the naming of facilities managing municipal wastewaters. For many decades, such facilities have been called Wastewater Treatment Plants, or WWTPs. The subtext is that the wastewater we create is just a problem that needs to be dealt with, and not in a glamorous way. However, the newly adopted term – Water Resource Recovery Facilities, or WRRFs – put a more favorable (and more accurate) spin to describe what this intricate public service entails. In essence, the announcement from WEF shifts the focus from negative historical connotations to the great opportunities in treating our waters for beneficial applications. As far as I’m concerned, this change in public communications about wastewater treatment is long overdue!

    Indeed, wastewater treatment is ultimately about reusing and conserving the limited water resources we use every day to help maintain a safe, secure, and sustainable water supply. But there is another layer of “resource recovery” opportunities available in the water treatment supply chain. Classically, plants capture methane that is produced during the treatment process, combust it, and turn it into electricity. But this is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of new water resource recovery technologies visible within the industry. Innovations in recovering materials and precious metals are maturing in the marketplace. Other examples, including the capture of electrons from pollutants in wastewater to make electricity without methane*, continue to arm utilities and companies with options to improve water resource management while realizing a direct return on capital investment.

    But there are problems in seeing this potential put into practice. The bottleneck in adoption of these tremendous inventions to serve ratepayers like you and I abound. Some of these bottlenecks make more sense than others. Risk aversion, one of the largest factors, is a vital safeguard since utilities and industrial wastewater generators are 100% responsible for the safety of water supplied to the public; trust is paramount in this relationship.  However, artificially low utility costs and an antiquated water pricing schedule are directly contributing to a capital crunch for essential technologies and upgrades prescribed for utilities and industries around the country. The shortsighted viewpoint of keeping rates rock bottom and sacrificing the long-term viability of our infrastructure is a dangerous bet. An ounce of prevention is most definitely worth a pound of cure in this case, as evidenced by information presented on the websites linked at the end of this article. By thinking in a drastically different manner about water, our country stands to benefit – both environmentally and economically.

    Effective marketing also plays a big role in changing the water conversation among the greater population. Although stakeholders within the water industry are making strides to improve messaging through the rebranding of WWTPs to WWRFs among other examples, more work is needed on all levels. This includes entrepreneurs like myself as we engage with potential customers, strategic partners, and investors. The next generation technologies are out there and continue to be optimized. However, they need a push for adoption by industry leaders and beyond. Policy leaders must familiarize themselves with the persuasive arguments around water and wastewater infrastructure and the dividends investing in a sustainable future can pay. We will create a sustainable economic future - using our resources wisely - while simultaneously safeguarding quality water resources for generations to come. Taking action now will avert jeopardizing access to the #1 most important resource on the planet…clean water.

    *Mark Sholin is the founder of Arbsource, a Phoenix, AZ-based startup company commercializing such a technology. Prior to Arbsource, Mark was a PhD student at Arizona State University researching wastewater treatment technologies. He has work history with water and process control companies including Honeywell, Arcadis, and Infilco-Degremont. You can learn more about him and his company at www.arbsource.us

    For more insights into the talking points raised in this essay, especially focusing on job creation by increasing water infrastructure capital investment, please visit the following links:

     

    -- http://waterisyourbusiness.org/

    -- http://www.waters-worth-it.org/

    -- http://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/a/#p/wastewater/overview

    -- http://growingblue.com/water-in-2050/

    -- http://www.waterforjobs.org/statistics

    -- http://water.epa.gov/infrastructure/sustain/si_faqs.cfm

    -- http://wef.org

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