Southeast Green - Business depends on the environment and the environment depends on business

Recycling: Americans aren’t failing - the system is

Recycling: Americans aren’t failing - the system is

Recently in the Washington Post an article entitled, American recycling is stalling, and the big blue bin is one reason why, appeared stating that basically America had topped their recycling rates and that recycling was on a decline. The article interviewed an executive from Waste Management stating that local governments were going to have to step in and either pay them money to run recycling operations or take over part of the recycling process.

Many experts in the materials handling industry (what the general public calls recycling) are looking to get diversion rates from the landfills up to 60% and the City of Atlanta has stated they are on target to be “Zero Waste” which is a 90% diversion rate. So, why are recycling handlers saying we have tapped out at 36%? What’s the answer to everything? Money. David Steiner, chief executive of Waste Management stated in the article, “We want to help our customers, but we are a for-profit business. We won’t stay in the industry if we can’t make a profit.” Of course the irony is not too far back in the past, large landfill companies like Waste Management were trying to prevent recycling so they could keep tipping fees and more recently put little recyclers out of business as they moved in because they could see profits.

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The Death of the Georgia EV Tax Credit: Why this is personal

The Death of the Georgia EV Tax Credit: Why this is personalThe legislature giveth and the legislature taketh away. This year was no different. There was once again small victories and damaging defeats. Of course the one bright spot was the solar bill which will push Georgia along the path for even more solar. Seems we like the national spotlight and receiving accolades for our progressive push for solar, but not so fast. The worst thing that happened this year was the death of the tax credit for EVs. Now that the impending death of the tax credit is a couple weeks away, it seemed appropriate to review some of the reasons for its demise.  

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The Problem with Paleo

The Problem with Paleo - Banksy's Caveman Copyright Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/lord-jim/2245362817/sizes/o/ - Reused with permission through the Creative Commons License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/For the last couple of years my time has been spent in the natural food world and one word keeps on popping up…Paleo. What is Paleo? It is a real diet? Is it a community of bloggers and workout enthusiasts? Is it a lifestyle? Is it science? Is it worth taking note of or just another fad?

Well the answer might surprise you. It is all of the above. It also is a great story! It has plots and subplots, interesting characters, compelling facts, villains, and plenty of drama. In fact, it has tons of drama. The Paleo world has all the makings for a good Southern novel, if you ask me.

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Whole Foods Whole Headache

Whole FoodsWhole Foods has a problem. Actually Whole Foods has created a problem for itself.

As more and more Americans become educated on how, where and when their food is grown and delivered, more consumers are making better educated choices about their food. However, as more people become educated that also means more people are asking questions. Additionally, with the instant gratification of the internet, people expect answers immediately.

Enter Whole Foods with what seems to be the perfect answer, transparency of information. Whole Foods has made the commitment to show organic certification for all products and very soon. That seems easy right?

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The Volt, the Bolt and Detroit

The completely redesigned 2016 Chevy VoltI was recently delighted to open my inbox and find an invitation from GM to attend the North American International Auto Show (aka NAIAS) hosted annually in Detroit. Of course, my second thought was they clearly don’t know how girly I am when it comes to cars because I really fall in the category of I appreciate great design but as long as it drives and I can listen to my music loud that’s about the extent of my car knowledge. Then of course to prove that I am totally crazy I realized I was excited to be in Detroit in…January.

However, I do know a thing or two about EVs (electric vehicles) and the charging of EVs and since Chevrolet was releasing the totally new and completely re-engineered Volt, I was a perfect candidate to geek out on a new EV.

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Why Cheerios NonGMO announcement is a win even when Oats aren’t a GMO crop

Robyn O'Brien - The Unhealthy TruthMany months ago, Cheerios, manufactured by General Mills, made a national announcement that they would make Cheerios GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) free. Almost as soon as the announcement was made there was a chorus of supporters of non-GMO foods who cried foul. Oats aren't a GMO crop.

Here’s what’s important to know. Contrary to what you think, this was not about oats. Oats are indeed, so far, a crop that has not been tampered with genetically. The reason this was such a big deal was because General Mills had announced that it was going to start using sugar beets to sweeten Cheerios which is a genetically modified crop. So there is  transparency, but like most issues with anything dealing with large business it’s complicated. The reason it was a big win it was the first time a national company had agreed to remove or not use a GMO ingredient. That’s worth the win! 

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