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Sustainability : Cincinnati In The News

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Two Cincinnati landmarks among most endangered in US

The National Trust for Historic Preservation’s 2014 list, which lists the country’s most endangered historic places, was released last week. For the first time, the list includes two sites from the same city—Cincinnati—where it recognizes the Art Deco Union Terminal and Music Hall as buildings in need of large-scale restorations. Read more.

UC makes Travel + Leisure "top beautiful college" list

A decades-long renewal topping $1 billion is paying dividends for Cincy, which has cultivated a strikingly modern look—and proven that “it doesn’t need ivy-covered brick walls” to be beautiful, as UC Magazine put it.

Read the full story here.

Solar-Powered Proteins Developed That Can Filter Antibiotics And Carcinogens From Water Read more at

A solar-powered nano filter capable of filtering antibiotics and dangerous carcinogens from large bodies of water has been developed by researchers at the University of Cincinnati.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati Public Staircases: A Walking History Abandoned But Not Forgotten

The historic importance of urban staircases in Cincinnati was created in part because of geographic contrasts poised by steep inclines situated between neighborhoods. 

Read the full story here.

UC students bring home gold at national Acara Challenge competition

Students from the University of Cincinnati and the Indian Institute of Technology developed Humble Commode, a sustainable sanitation solution that won gold in a national business challenge competition.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati City Hall goes mobile

Never lose track of garbage or recycling day again. Report potholes or graffitti the minute you see it. Keep track of reports you've made to the city. All using your phone. The City of Cincinnati's City Hall app allows you to send in reports and even follow tweets about city services and projects.

Read more and find out how to get the free app here.

Partnership for Sustainable Communities visits Cincinnati, Indianapolis

Last week, Deputy Secretary Porcari was in Cincinnati and Indianapolis, with his counterparts from HUD and EPA, reviewing both cities' progress on key projects funded by the federal Partnership for Sustainable Communities.

Read the full story here.

Strive Partnership integrates Brandery startup concept

One of the Brandery startup tech concepts known as "Ontract" has recently become part of Strive Partnership’s plan to personalize the education each student receives at Cincinnati, Covington or Newport public schools.

Read the full story here.

Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance Improves 1,000 Homes, Driving Energy Efficiency

Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance Improves 1,000 Homes, Driving Energy Efficiency and Economic Development.

Read the full story here.

A Cincinnati park shifts the paradigm

Over-The-Rhine’s tipping point wasn’t in the form of an eco-friendly general store or gourmet popsicle shop (it now has both), but rather the renovation of the neighborhood’s cultural heart, Washington Park.

Read the full story here.

Can the centers hold?

Ohio’s three largest cities—Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland—are reinvesting in their urban cores, eager to capitalize on a renewed interest in city living. But is the deck stacked against them? 

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati: the greenest city in America

Many cities trumpet their sustainability initiatives to claim the title of “greenest” city in America, but it’s hard to argue with the ongoing turnaround from brown to green in Cincinnati.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati dumps Duke Energy

Today, Duke Energy found out that more than 50,000 commercial and residential electricity users in the city of Cincinnati, Ohio, are dumping Duke and shifting to 100 percent clean energy. Cincinnati is a trendsetter: it is the first city in Ohio, and the first of its size in the nation, to go 100 percent green.
Read the full story here.

UC tops architecture list with four buildings

College campuses play a large role in the quality of life of students, and Top Colleges Online believes a quality campus plays a significant part in creating a quality learning environment and successful educational experience. Many college campuses are pleasant, but some go a step further and are themselves intellectually stimulating by being interesting architecturally. UC tops the list with four different building making the list.

Read the full story here.

Smart Growth America interviews Mayor Mallory

Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory is on a mission to support economic development in his city, and he’s using smart growth and downtown development strategies to accomplish that goal.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati could be completely powered by renewables this year

Powering any city with 100 percent renewable energy sources without any significant cost increase for consumers is a no-brainer, right? The answer is definitely “yes” in Cincinnati, Ohio, where city officials are working on a deal that could have only renewable electrons flowing across the city by this summer.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati moves toward 100 percent renewable energy

Cincinnati could be the first US city to be powered entirely on renewable energy, without any additional cost to taxpayers, reports UrbanCincy.

Read the full story here.

Soapbox on Cincinnati Edition

Soapbox Cincinnati presented its 12 Things to Watch For in 2012 in its first issue of the year, and Managing Editor Elissa Yancey expounds upon those in a conversation with Mark Perzel.

Read the full story, and listen to the whole program, here.

Growing a new city

Friends say Brunner is a perfect fit as new president and CEO of the Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority. The 52-year-old real estate executive and former CPA has the experience and connections to make deals work.

Read the full story here.

A Gathering of Student Work: My studio at the University of Cincinnati

This fall, I co-taught such a studio (with Eli Meiners) at the University of Cincinnati. The project was a real one: the conversion of a former Kroger supermarket building into an open storage facility for the Cincinnati Art Museum, a Montessori school, and studios and display space for artists. The rules of the studio were a bit different: you could do anything you wanted, as long as it was begged, borrowed or stolen; your design did not have to be efficient or buildable, but gathered together from existing materials or from other buildings.

Read the full story here.

Study looks at human health effects of 'Green Housing'

UC is one of the first research sites to participate in a new federally funded study which assesses the economic impact of "green” housing—particularly when it comes to the health of people living in multi-family, low-income housing.

Read the full story here.

FlowWorks Launches in Cincinnati

The City of Cincinnati is the latest municipality to join FlowWorks. Beginning immediately, the city is moving its environmental monitoring data onto the FlowWorks web platform where it can be securely stored, edited, analyzed and turned into actionable information.

Read the full story here.

Nature trails can improve home's value

It turns out that living near Little Miami's Scenic Trail offers more than just natural beauty – it might also improve your home’s value. That’s the conclusion drawn by two University of Cincinnati researchers in a new report.

Read the full story here.

Recyclebank, Cincinnati celebray one year anniversary

In October, the city of Cincinnati celebrates the one-year anniversary of the launch of its enhanced recycling program and the implementation of the Recyclebank rewards program. The city of Cincinnati can now boast a 49 percent increase in the tonnage of recyclables collected in the past six months compared with the same period in 2010.

Read the full story here.

Creek Restoration Keys Cincinnati's Battle Against Urban Blight, Stormwater

Because of the 3,700-foot-long, 19.5-foot-wide pipe underneath the area, South Fairmount is now part of one of the largest public works projects in Cincinnati's history and one of the nation's biggest experiments in green infrastructure.

Read the full story here.

Recycled plastic bottles to become casino uniforms

Cintas introduced new shirts for casino workers that are partly made from recycled plastic bottles. Each shirt uses five recycled bottles, and comes in five different colors that are machine-washable. Cintas also has a recycled apparel line for hospital staff including scrubs and polo shirts.

Read the full story here.

Condo project combines historic preservation with LEED certification

Green Builder featured an apartment complex and retail space in Northside for its green qualities and LEED certifications. MC3, a local development group, followed LEED certified standards to achieve a Gold rating by recycling materials through the development process and using green products such as bamboo flooring, Energy Star appliances, recycled countertops, and low-flow plumbing fixtures.

Read the full story here.

Northern Ky. school adds $2 million worth of solar panels

Turkey Foot Middle School in Northern Kentucky recently installed $2 million worth of solar panels, reaching almost net-zero in energy costs. Turkey Foot is one of the three greenest schools in Northern Kentucky, saving $3 million in energy costs in the last four years and utilizing other energy-saving features.

Read the full story here.

Amp delivers its first electric Mercedes-Benz ML conversion

Amp Electric Vehicles, a Cincinnati company that removes the internal parts of combustion passenger cars and replaces them with electric powertrains, has delivered its first conversion of a Mercedes-Benz ML 350.  The conversion is part of a five-year contract between Amp Electric Vehicles and Northern Lights Energy of Iceland that will produce 1,000 electric vehicles. 

Read the full story here.

Edible Magazines win James Beard Award

Edible Ohio Valley won the 2011 James Beard Foundation Publication of the Year Award during the Beard Journalism Awards dinner in New York City. One of 70 Edible Communities publications nationwide that received the award, Edible Ohio Valley features locally grown and community based foods, family farmers, growers, retailers, chefs and food artisans, all collaborating to promote a healthy and affordable lifestyle.
Read the full story here.

Awards Program names Cincinnati businesses and organizations "Bike Friendly Destinations"

Nearly 40 Cincinnati area businesses, organizations, and institutions were awarded as "Bike Friendly Destinations." Developed by Queen City Bike, this program encourages more people to travel by bicycle, benefitting the individual, destination, community and all of Cincinnati.

Read the full story here.

UC research digs deep into the fracking controversy

A new growing industry promises jobs and access to cheaper energy resources on American soil. But this process raises concern and controversy as "fracking" involves using millions of gallons of water, sand, and chemical to break up organic-rich shale to release natural gases. A University of Cincinnati doctoral student of geography, Deborah Kittner, has been researching this topic and will present "What's the Fracking Problem?" at the Association of American Geographers annual meeting.

Read the full story here.

P&G joins forces with Recyclebank

Due to the successful collaboration with RecycleBank recycling rewards program in Cincinnati, Procter & Gamble will expand its collaboration nationwide. This partnership further promotes P & G's and RecycleBank's mission of educating the public and rewarding consumers for protecting and improving the environment.

Read the full story here.

Ten best cities for commuters

Kiplinger selected its 10 Best Cities for Commuters, ranking Cincinnati at number seven. These cities have the easiest and most affordable commutes, while taking into consideration the population and low congestion costs. Cincinnati features two-bus services, and the future addition of the streetcar.

Read the full story here.

Totally Green: P&G's design for new company locations

Procter & Gamble continues to promote green sustainability by pursuing LEED qualification for offices around the world. A new plant currently being constructed in China represents the beginning of this commitment and features green technologies involving the water system, lighting system, and waste management. Other factories in the U.S. and other countries are currently trying to meet any local green standards.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati Zoo gets solar canopy parking

The Cincinnati Zoo will become the largest public accessible parking lot with a solar canopy. The solar canopy will provide 20 percent of the facility's energy needs and will be completed in April. By maintaining its reputation as the greenest zoo in America, all of the major components will be manufactured locally or within the nation.

Read the full story here.

Swap, Shop, Share and Save Online

Keara Schwartz from Share Some Sugar made CBS News' list of top picks for websites that can save you money by swapping, shopping, or sharing. Schwartz's website connects you with people in the community to trade or buy items for less.

Read the full story here.

Procter & Gamble aims to use only renewable energy, materials

Procter & Gamble continues to practice environmental sustainability by setting the goal of using 100 percent renewable energy and recycled materials for all products and packaging in the future.  The company plans to replace 25 percent of its petroleum-based materials with renewable materials and also aims to ensure that zero consumer and manufacturing waste go to landfills.

Read the full story here.

P&G will compact all its powder detergents in 2011

Procter & Gamble plans to compress all of its U.S. and Canadian powdered laundry detergents in order to contribute to green choices. This change will reduce fuel consumption for transport and reduce packaging. The existing detergents will still be as efficient, cleaning the same number of loads as previous detergents.

Read the full story here.

Reds' outfielder makes planet-friendly strides

Chris Dickerson, a Cincinnati Reds outfielder, developed a passion for ecological issues and in 2008 helped found the non-profit organization "Players for the Plant." This organization helps encourage pro athletes to become environmental ambassadors in their community. Dickerson also supports the use of solar power at two stadiums in the nation and promotes easy steps to being green in order to make a difference.

Read the full story here.

Keep America Beautiful launches litter prevention campaign in Cincinnati

Keep America Beautiful and Keep Cincinnati Beautiful launched "Littering is Wrong Too" last week in Cincinnati. The three month pilot program will advertise on radio spots, posters at bars and restaurants, billboards, and online ads. The national campaign is being rolled out in Cincinnati before a national release.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati finds creative green option with RecycleBank

Cincinnati looks for more creative ‘green’ options by joining a recycling program offered by RecycleBank that will begin this October. Working with Rumpke Recycling and recycling cart manufacturer Cascade Engineering, communities will have a bi-weekly recycling pick up. This change will save $700,000 in collection costs and $364,000 per year in landfill disposal fees.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati Zoo's Go Green Garden installs a Windspire wind turbine

The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden installed the Windspire® wind turbine to help power the ticketing and membership building. This cost and energy efficient turbine produces approximately 2000 kilowatt hours per year in 12 mph average winds. The addition demonstrates the Zoo's dedication to going green and furthers its reputation as the greenest zoo in the country.

Read the full story here.


Spill provides outreach and marketing opportunity for P&G's Dawn detergent

P&G's Dawn liquid dish detergent started its campaign for cleaning birds and marine animals harmed by oil spills in the Gulf last summer. Since 1989, Dawn has been the best product for this use on animals. Recently they sent 7,000 bottles to the Gulf.

Read the full story here.

Ohio Leads the Way in Preventing Future Oil Spills?

Ohio based Advanced Mechanical Products(AMP) works hard at converting new General motor cars to all-electric in order to save the environment. Due to the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, a demand for alternatives to oil will rise and AMP can contribute to preventing future oil spills. A dealership in Cincinnati currently sells a converted electric version of the Chevrolet Equinox.

Read the full story here.


P&G Seeking to Expand Tide Franchise Stores

Procter & Gamble's Tide Dry Cleaners works to open multiple franchised dry cleaning locations by expanding to Atlanta. With the success of its sister company, Mr. Clean Car Wash, which is the largest full service car wash franchise in the U.S., Tide Dry Cleaners hopes to touch more consumers with their GreenEarth cleaning process and drive-thru service.

Read the full story here.


Procter & Gamble launches environmental sustainability scorecard

Procter & Gamble continues their commitment to environmental sustainability by launching the Supplier Environmental Sustainability Scorecard. This rating system requires input from P & G suppliers regarding environmental information. It helps the companies as well as consumers make smart buying decisions as they look at how much of an impact products have on the environment.

Read the full story here.


UC committed to sustainability in educational offerings

College students now look at a new criterion of sustainability in their college search. The University of Cincinnati was among six Ohio Universities the BG news looked at for their commitment of sustainability in education. UC offers a minor in sustainability as well as classes in environmental studies, environmental health, and environmental engineering.

Read the full story here.

Cincinnati Riverfront Park one of best new urban parks in America

The Cincinnati Riverfront Park is being recognized as one of the best new urban parks in America even before it is completed.  Phase 1 of the multi-phase project is currently underway and will eventually create a new 45-acre park on Cincinnati's central riverfront.

The new park will also be the crown jewel of Cincinnati's larger efforts to reconnect its downtown with the Ohio River after having long been disconnected by an interstate and freight railroad lines.  The park will also be integrated into the city's proposed modern streetcar system that will connect it with the rest of the Central Business District, the historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood and communities surrounding the University of Cincinnati.

Read full article here.

Cincinnati proposes over 230 miles of bicycle lanes

Leaders in Cincinnati are proposing 230 miles of bicycle lanes to help improve the bicycling culture in the Midwestern city.  The newly released Bicycle Master Plan calls for over 130 miles of dedicated bike lanes, and over 100 miles of sharrows.

The Bicycle Master Plan includes a comprehensive map of the proposed bicycle network and recommends educational, encouragement and enforcement programs that will hopefully "cultivate a culture of awareness" of bicycling as part of the larger transportation options in Cincinnati.

Read full article here.

St. Elizabeth Healthcare makes transition to electronic medical record system

Northern Kentucky-based St. Elizabeth Healthcare made a huge announcement when they said they would transition from a paper-based medical record system to an electronic system intended to improve efficiencies and reduce waste.

With the transition to the new system called Epic, St. Elizabeth becomes the first network in the Cincinnati area to standardize their electronic records in multiple physician offices, off-site locations and the network's hospitals.

Read full article here.

P&G expands 'Future Friendly' marketing effort

Procter & Gamble, the world's largest consumer products company, is expanding its 'Future Friendly' marketing effort that promotes environmental responsibility under the guise of consumer education.  P&G hopes to eventually reach 50 million U.S. households by the end of 2010 with this effort.

A recent consumer survey indicated that 74 percent of consumers would switch to another brand if they were able to conserve resources while not having to pay more, and 34 percent said a lack of information was the reason they didn't lead a more environmentally-friendly lifestyle.

Read full article here.

University of Cincinnati ranked as one of world's most beautiful college campuses

The University of Cincinnati's efforts to remake its urban campus have been well recognized and awarded nationally.  A new ranking by Forbes lists UC's campus as one of the most beautiful in the world.

The ranking was developed by a panel of architects and campus designers.  The Forbes ranking touts UC's bold master plan for its main campus that has positioned the university well for the 21st Century.

Read full article here.

Northern Kentucky University constructing buildings with smart technologies

NKU is practicing what it preaches in classroom by constructing buildings with intelligent building systems that generate and collect information on the structure's electrical, mechanical, security, and other systems.

The smart technologies were most recently incorporated into the design of the new $55 million College of Informatics building that was also designed to grow with future advances in technology.  The technologies will help improve energy efficiency in the building that is expected to qualify for LEED Silver certification.

Read full article here.

Cincinnati receives grant for 'green' vehicles

The City of Cincinnati received a $122,000 grant from Clean Fuels Ohio to help add 18 new alternative fuel vehicles to the city's ever-greening fleet.

The City will add eight hybrid-electric vehicles and 10 propane-powered vehicles in place of existing gasoline-powered vehicles.  City officials hope to eventually convert all applicable vehicles to hybrids as they are replaced.

Read full article here.

Cincinnati residents brainstorm on casino appearance

More than 200 people attended the Broadway Commons casino charrette in Over-the-Rhine to discuss what they would like, and not like, to see with the new casino to be developed at the northeast downtown location.

Many of the top concerns revolved around potential light and noise pollution, and creating a casino that is energy efficient.  Residents also stated that they're looking for a casino development that is beautiful and adds to the existing beauty of the neighborhood and center city amenities.

Read full article here.

Streetcars get boost in new transit policy

New policy set out by the Obama administration is placing more of a focus on urban circulator transportation projects that promote livability. The action places Cincinnati's streetcar project among those that could qualify for new funding.

Some 80 cities are qualified for the new urban circulator money, but of those 80 about a dozen are "very close" to actually implementing such a system.  One of those "very close" cities is Cincinnati as it works to develop its own modern streetcar system that will initially run between Downtown, Over-the-Rhine and Uptown.

Read full article here.

Riverboat owner wants to go green

Newport-based BB Riverboats is looking to go green by seeking a $500,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to retrofit its flagship Belle of Cincinnati with three new, more efficient electric generators.

BB Riverboats managers say that if they're successful in winning the grant money they will apply for additional grants to replace the three diesel engines on the Belle of Cincinnati, as well as the generators and engines on the company's two other boats - the Mark Twain and River Queen.

Read full article here.

ColdWater Tide: Provoking the Ah-Ha Moment at Procter & Gamble

In 2007 Procter & Gamble conducted its own energy audit that led to the creation of ColdWater Tide.  The audit has since led to a surge in innovation, the creation of new corporate roles focused on sustainability, and some big product changes.

Those changes have led to substantial and measurable decreases in the company's corporate carbon footprint, but have also built brand loyalty as customers realize much of the energy savings within their own home.  The move by the world's largest consumer products company is one that is forcing competitors to keep up while it is also making a profound impact on the world's energy use.

Read full article here.

Amtrak: All-Ohio train would draw 478,000 riders

Amtrak has released a study that shows a plan that would restore passenger rail service between Ohio's largest cities would draw close to a half-million riders annually by hitting key demographics.

The study also identified $517.6 million in potential costs to get the service running between Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus, and Cleveland with two auxiliary stops in northern Cincinnati and western Cleveland.

The last private train service to operate from Cleveland to Cincinnati ended in the early 1970's.  The 255-mile route is one of the most heavily populated corridors without rail service in the Midwest and boasts high population densities and a large population of college students.

Read full article here.

Cincinnati parks rank near the top nationwide

In a recent study from the Trust for Public Land, Cincinnati ranked highly in most categories for park systems around the country including most park space per resident, most visited parks and total amount of park land.

The annual survey examined park facts for the nation's largest 77 cities.  These facts were then tabulated for comparative purposes and broken down into different categories based on type and population class of cities.

Read full article here.

Cincinnati area sees first 'green' house deconstruction

The Cincinnati area saw its first 'green' full-house deconstruction in the city of Wyoming at 641 Oak Avenue.  The deconstruction effort is employing 10 to 15 people and will take four to six days.

The site of the house will become green space for the community while the deconstruction project is salvaging an estimated 6,400 cubic feet of building material that would have otherwise ended up in a landfill.

Read full article here.

Ohio ranks best in the Midwest for clean energy job growth

A new report by The Pew Charitable Trusts ranks Ohio best in the Midwest and among the top five states nationwide for job growth in a clean energy economy.

The Pew study ranked Ohio among the top five nationwide with the most jobs in clean energy (3,653), energy efficiency (5,367) and environmentally friendly production (2,800) with an overall clean job total of 35,267 in 2007.  This represents a 31 percent job growth since 1998 and an average annual job growth of .85 percent says the Ohio Business Development Coalition.

Read full article here.

Revitalizing Over-the-Rhine: Making Impressive Progress

Cincinnati's historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood is in the midst of a major transformation.  The neighborhood that saw serious decline over the past several decades is finally starting to rebound.  With this revitalization comes new challenges and opportunities.

In part three of his discussion, Kaid Benfield looks at the neighborhood and the impressive progress that has already been made.  Highlighting many of the successful projects in Over-the-Rhine's Gateway Quarter and future projects by the Cincinnati Center City Development Corporation (3CDC).

Kaid Benfield is the director of the Smart Growth Program with the Natural Resources Defense Council in Washington D.C.

Read full article here.

Revitalizing Over-the-Rhine: Neighborhood Assets

Cincinnati's historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood is in the midst of a major transformation.  The neighborhood that saw serious decline over the past several decades is finally starting to rebound.  With this revitalization comes new challenges and opportunities.

In part two of his discussion, Kaid Benfield looks at the neighborhood and its current assets that can be built on.  Assets like Findlay Market, Music Hall and Washington Park top the list.

Kaid Benfield is the director of the Smart Growth Program with the Natural Resources Defense Council in Washington D.C.

Read full article here.

Electric cars park free in Cincinnati

In an effort to further put the Green Cincinnati Initiative into action the City will soon be offering free parking to anyone driving an all-electric vehicle.

Vice Mayor David Crowley says that while only a small number of people will be affected at first, the new program is a symbolic effort.  "This is a concrete step of some economic value to people willing to invest in all-electric vehicles or who drive them," says Crowley.

Those wishing to take advantage of the program will have to display a city-issued sticker to park without charge.

Read full article here.

Revitalizing Over-the-Rhine: The Legacy & The Challenge

Cincinnati's historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood is in the midst of a major transformation.  The neighborhood that saw serious decline over the past several decades is finally starting to rebound.  With this revitalization comes new challenges.

Kaid Benfield looks at the neighborhood and examines how revitalization might continue without further jeopardizing any additional historic structures, how the neighborhood might be revitalized in a sustainable and environmentally friendly manner and how to do all of this while staying true to the culture of Over-the-Rhine past and present.

Kaid Benfield is the director of the Smart Growth Program with the Natural Resources Defense Council in Washington D.C.

Read full article here.

Cycling through history on the Underground Railroad Bicycle Route

The Adventure Bicycling Association has put together a 2,000-mile trail that roughly traces the path slaves once took on their journey to freedom some two centuries ago.

Since 2007, more than 4,500 maps of the route have been sold.  Bicyclists are able to experience the journey in a more real way, but also are able to make stops along the way.

Ohio plays an important role, on the trail, as it was an important demarcation line between free and slave states.  In Cincinnati today there exists the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center that pays tribute to this journey that often went right through Cincinnati.

Read full article here.

Cincinnati trash company expands recycling

As the environment becomes more and more of a focus, trash collectors are also starting to take notice at the economic benefits that go along with the environmental ones.

As a result Cincinnati's leading trash collector, Rumpke Consolidated Co., is installing a new $5 million system at its recycling facility that will allow the facility to scan, weigh and separate containers by plastic content which officials says will allow for handling twice the amount of material and a wider variety of plastics.

The new machines will allow for the facility to sort 50 tons of materials an hour, compared with 15 to 20 tons an hour by the current machines.

There are 23 plants nationwide currently using this technology, and Rumpke plans to install this system at its other plants in Dayton, Columbus and Louisville.

Read full article here.

Cincinnati to receive awards for Climate Action Plan

Cincinnati will host the 9th annual Green Energy Ohio Meeting at the CARE/Crawley Building on the campus of the University of Cincinnati on Friday, May 29th.

At the meeting Cincinnati will be recognized as the 2008 Clean Energy Community of the Year.  Efforts from the University of Cincinnati, Duke Energy, Cincinnati State Community & Technical College and the City of Cincinnati led to the selection.

One of the primary forces behind the award is the City's aggressive Climate Protection Action Plan combined with innovative energy efficiency and renewable energy programs.

Read full article here.

Cincinnati’s Gateway Quarter and the Streetcar

Cincinnati’s Gateway Quarter in the historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood is experiencing tremendous redevelopment efforts that could soon be coupled with a new modern streetcar system running between downtown Cincinnati, Over-the-Rhine and uptown Cincinnati.

After a recent visit, to the neighborhood, Sam Newburg describes the already completed work as stunning and goes on to say that “the buildings are beautiful, and the fact that so many of them, dating to the 19th Century, are still intact, is lucky.”

The Gateway Quarter area had a mere four homeowners according to the 2000 Census and now boasts hundreds of new condominiums and dozens of new businesses.

The intersection of 12th and Vine once was the center of this neighborhood’s troubled past and had 500-plus police calls a few years ago which has since dropped to zero.

Read the full article here.

P&G named among InfoWorld's Green 15

Procter & Gamble has been named as one of International Data Group's InfoWorld's Green 15 for its success in reducing travel through the adoption and implementation of its Video Collaboration Studios (VCS).

P&G began deploying the VCS technology across its global network in October 2007 with the goal of implementing 43 studios in just nine months; Today, there are more than 50 studios up and running.

It's estimated that, between July 2008 and December 2008, VCS helped P&G eliminate 6,000 international flights - the equivalent of taking 3,000 cars off the road for a year.

The InfoWorld Green 15 awards, published on InfoWorld.com, recognize the 15 most innovative IT initiatives that fall under the umbrella of sustainability.

Read the full release here.

Xavier sustainability intern promotes green initiatives

In its continuing effort to keep the Xavier University campus green, the Sustainability Committee has named junior James Cave as Sustainability Committee Intern.

Xavier president Fr. Michael Graham, S.J. was instrumental in gathering funding for the job, which will include a tuition reduction for Cave and a small budget for events and other initiatives.

As the student go-to on sustainability initiatives, Cave will be charged with working with clubs, the Student Government Association, and the Student Activities Council to make the campus more environmentally-friendly.

Cave, who drafted the original proposal for the position, was chosen based on his closeness to the project.

Read the full article here.

Electric car company chasing $2.5M national prize

Advanced Mechanical Products Inc. (AMP), a Blue Ash-based company that is converting Saturn Skys into all-electric vehicles, has been accepted into the $10 million Progressive Insurance Automotive X Prize.

The national competition, held to promote the development of next-generation, super fuel-efficient vehicles, is expected to include up to 140 teams of competitors ranging from university engineers to entrepreneurs to automobile manufacturers.

"We think a head-to-head competition is definitely the way to go," Steve Burns, one of AMP's founders and its CEO, tells the Enquirer.

AMP was one of the first 40 teams accepted into the competition and could collect $2.5 million if it wins.

The company has applied for a $20 million loan from the U.S. Department of Energy that would allow them to employ 300 people and to produce 30,000 electric vehicle kits over five years.

Read the full article here.

Urban renewal

With a renewed focus on cities coming from the Obama administration, an emerging generation of urban designers is looking at improving the existing fabric of our urban areas, such as public infrastructure, public spaces, and the existing built environment.

But with few new initiatives -- and relatively little in infrastructure spending in the federal economic stimulus package -- is all of this talk about reinvigorating our cities merely lip service?

Recent trends in designing compact, sustainable development, such as New Urbanism's neotraditionalist approach, are now facing a backlash in some design circles because they seem to work better on greenfield sites, not atop existing infrastructure.

Instead of these "master plans" that dictate development from the top down, planners such as Dana Cuff and Roger Sherman of Los Angeles-based think tank cityLAB advocate getting back to projects coordinated on a smaller scale, led by community organizers, planning staff, municipal officials, and developers.

Read the full article here.

AdvanceBio acquires rights to develop next-generation liquid fuels

Milford-based AdvanceBio Systems LLC has acquired exclusive intellectual property rights to provide pre-treatment equipment and systems to the next-generation cellulosic ethanol and renewable chemicals industries.

AdvanceBio, a provider of consulting services and technology to companies that are developing new projects in the biofuels industry and in the biochemical sector, plans to develop small-scale reactor systems for use by researchers who are developing the next generation of microorganisms, enzymes, feedstocks and crops, according to company principal Dale Monceaux.

They also plan to provide commercial-scale systems to corporations planning industrial-scale facilities.

With its acquisition, the company joins more than a dozen other companies currently performing research to develop technology for next-generation renewable liquid fuels.

Read the full release here.

Students rally to better UC's environment

Several University of Cincinnati student organizations are bringing environmental sustainability initiatives to campus.

Last year, Students for Ecological Design (SED) worked with university administration to bring recycling to the College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning (DAAP).

Leaders for Environmental Awareness and Protection have focused on water saving, and plan on partnering with SED and student government for Earth Week activities.

And the President's Advisory Council on Environment & Sustainability made sure that the new campus power plant was less polluting than the old coal one.

Read the full article here.

Xavier expands plan for greener campus

Xavier University spends $2 million per year on electricity, but is much more efficient than benchmark schools in the Midwest.

That is according to Xavier's Sustainability Committee, which is developing a comprehensive greenhouse gas inventory as part of the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment signed by President Fr. Michael Graham, S.J. in January 2008.

The Commitment requires the university to develop a plan to become climate neutral.

While a new central utility plant is expected to save electricity when it comes online in 2010, Sustainability Committee member Dr. Steve Cobb says there is a lot of work to do to educate students about not being so wasteful.

Read the full article here.

GE redesigns Cincinnati data center for efficiency

General Electric has completed an energy efficiency renovation of its Cincinnati data center, a move that can help the facility expand without taxing already burdened infrastructure.

While the center's computers remained untouched, improvements to the building's mechanical systems are expected to cut energy use at the facility by 40 percent.

These cost savings come at a time when data center construction is beginning to ramp up following the dot-com bubble burst, with more than $15 billion in new construction just last year.

This means that not only can General Electric capitalize on the success of their own data center, but is in a unique position to help other data centers expand through their uninterruptable power supply switching equipment and battery business.

Read the full article here.

P&G honored in Davos as one of 100 most sustainable companies

Procter & Gamble has been selected as one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

The honor, awarded by Corporate Knights Inc. and Innovest Strategic Value Advisors Inc., goes to companies who effectively manage environmental, social and governance risks and opportunities relative to their industry peers.

As detailed in "Designed to Innovate...Sustainably", P&G's most recent annual sustainability report, the company reduced water consumption by seven percent, energy usage by six percent, and CO2 emissions by eight percent.

This is the first time the company has been named to the Global 100, which was launched in 2005.

Read the full article here.

Pleasant Ridge Montessori's sustainability featured in national teachers' publication

Pleasant Ridge Montessori School is one of five schools profiled in Building Minds, Minding Buildings, a publication highlighting the work that American Federation of Teachers (AFT) members and affiliates are doing to ensure that schools are designed and built in healthy and sustainable ways.

The profile examines how teachers, staff, parents and community members used green and sustainable principles to turn a declining neighborhood school into "the jewel of the school district".

Although convincing the school board to go green was a hard sell because of higher up-front costs, the community planning team was able to sway them with the promise of future cost savings and the draw of a healthier learning environment.

So far it has worked.  Enrollment is nearly double what was expected, new teachers are coming on board, and the community has rallied around a new neighborhood anchor.

Read the full article here.  (PDF, page 21)

Starchitecture is dead; Bring on sustainability

The age of the architectural icon is over, says Blair Kamin on Chicago architecture blog The Skyline.  So what will replace it?

The answer is likely to be useful, sustainable buildings that support our needs, if the Obama administration's ideas for economic growth are any indication.

The down economy seemingly has brought an end to the recent "icon age" that began with Frank Gehry's Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain and has led to a boom in signature buildings by architects such as Rem Koolhaus, Zaha Hadid, Daniel Libeskind and Santiago Calatrava.

Now architects looking for work are looking to the public sector, and will have to design buildings that are not standalone icons, but are part of the fabric of everyday life.

Read the full article here.

Cincinnati State grabs $499K for green business and technology

Cincinnati State Technical and Community College has been awarded $499,014 for its green business and green technology programs from the U.S. Department of Labor.

In Northern Kentucky, Gateway Community and Technical College will receive $846,670 for training in the homeland security industry.

Part of President Bush's Community-Based Job Training Grants Initiative, the grant is meant to improve the ability of community colleges and community-based organizations to provide their regions' workers with the skills needed to enter growing industries.

The Cincinnati State and Gateway applications were two of 68 approved out of 274 submitted for the $123 million in grants.

Read the full release here.

AMP all-electric car available for demonstration

Advanced Mechanical Products, Inc. (AMP), makers of a 100 percent electric vehicle, took their product to Washington to demonstrate its performance.

AMP builds all-electric Powertrains, using lithium phosphate batteries to convert GM Saturn Skys into zero-emissions vehicles.

Online orders are now being filled, and the first deliveries are scheduled for 2009.

During the trip, AMP president and CEO Jack Kuntz also submitted a Section 136 loan application to the U.S. Department of Energy, hoping to get funding from the $25 billion program to further develop the technology.

Read the full release here.

Wind power meeting attracts local interest

Several Cincinnati area manufacturers interested in tapping the emerging wind turbine market took part in a workshop last week in Cleveland.

Sponsored by the American Wind Energy Association and the Great Lakes Wind Network, the sold-out workshop gave companies the opportunity to find out how they can participate in a state grant program to further the development of renewable energy.

According to the Enquirer, John Colm of the Great Lakes Wind Network says that, while the economy has slowed down some wind power projects, "there's a lot of demand out there for projects already committed."

A four-year-old U.S. Department of Energy reports says that Ohio ranks only behind California in new job potential from wind farm projects due to its manufacturing expertise.

Read the full article here.

UC one of six universities selected for coal research

A University of Cincinnati project is one of six chosen by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to take part in its University Coal Research Program.

UC researchers will work to investigate and demonstrate two new types of doped-ceramic nanofilm-coated optical fiber chemical sensors that will only detect and interact with specific gas molecules.

The Missouri University of Science and Technology will collaborate on the three-year project.

The University Coal Research Program, which is the nation's longest-running student-teacher research grant initiative, is designed to "advance new ideas in coal research and to train a new generation of scientists and engineers in the investigation of long-term solutions for clean and efficient use of the nation's abundant coal resources", according to the DOE.

Read the full article here.

UC students win international underwater architecture competition

Three University of Cincinnati architecture and interior design students have won France's Archipelaego Competition, a global contest to design forward-looking underwater architecture.

Sarosh Ali, Jason Rohal, and Heather Vorst submitted designs for an eco-hotel/research center to be located on the Belize Barrier Reef that incorporated a skinned frame that would conserve divers' energy, a façade that was resistant to the growth of underwater organisms, and the use of tidal energy to supply the center's electricity.

The three will jointly receive the Jacques Rougerie Architecture of the Sea Award and will share a cash prize of about $2,000.

Archipelaego, which was open to both architecture students and professional architects, was held to encourage the public to preserve the oceans by increasing public awareness of the need for better management.

Read the full article here.

More than 400 local high schoolers explore green careers

More than 400 high school students from 18 local schools attended the 2008 International Education Summit on "Emerging Careers in Global Sustainability" at Northern Kentucky University.

Sponsored by the Global Center of Greater Cincinnati, the summit featured presentations from professionals in green industries and gave the students the opportunity to do some networking.

Alternative energy is likely to be the kind of growth industry that will be courting these students as they enter the workforce.

"We think that this energy transition ... is going to become a huge engine of job creation," says Chris Flavin, keynote speaker and president of Worldwatch Institute.  "It's possible to have an interesting career, a reasonably lucrative career where your personal needs are met, but also to feel like you're part of solving a big global problem."

Read the full article here.

P&G on-target on five-year environmental goals

In its first year of a five-year effort to reduce resource use and help children around the world, Procter & Gamble reports in its latest global sustainability report that its well on its way to meeting its goals.

By 2012, P&G aims to sell $20 billion in "sustainable innovation products"; reduce emissions, energy use, water use and waste by 10 percent; reach 250 million through its Live, Learn and Thrive program; and deliver 2 billion liters of clean water to children around the world.

"Sustainable innovation products", which are items that provide more than a 10 percent reduction in non-renewable resources compared to previous products or alternatives, have already reached the level of $2.05 billion.

Waste has been reduced by 21 percent, 60 million children have been reached through Live, Learn and Thrive, and 430 million liters of clean drinking water have been distributed.

Read the full article here.

Hamilton County in 3rd place in Green Counties Competition

Hamilton County is currently in third place in the large counties category in the National Association of Counties' Green Counties Competition.

The competition encourages county employees and residents to take the Energy Star Campaign pledge to save energy and help fight global warming.

By joining the pledge, employees and residents will receive a 10 percent discount on Office Depot's Green Brand Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs, and the county with the most pledges will receive 1,000 free lightbulbs.

The competition runs through November 30.

Read the full release here (PDF).

UC design students discuss Extreme Environments

Students in the Extreme Environments design class in the University of Cincinnati's College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning are meeting and working at the bottom of an Olympic-sized pool.

The idea behind the program is to have students first experience an environment before designing for it, and, last month, they submitted designs to France's Archipelaego competition.

Brian Davies, associate professor of architecture, tells Archinect that their "foray into underwater architecture is motivated by a conviction to inspire greater respect for the planet and by opportunities to enable exploration and science that will contribute broader understanding to fuel such respect."

"As designers it is our job to be knowledgeable and respectful of the impact structures, be it land, water, or space, have on the environment," says Emma Scarmack, third-year architecture student.  "The technology is here currently for us to be more conscious of built structures on land, but maybe not entirely there for underwater structures."

Read the full article here.

UC solar house serves as a summer laboratory

During the summer downtime, the UC solar house is being recycled - as a laboratory to learn how hot water can be used as a power source.

University of Cincinnati faculty and students representing the architecture, engineering and physics programs are using the house to explore the alternative energy technology in such applications as creating a hot water battery and using solar-heated water to dry clothes.

By the end of summer, the team hopes to be able to compare capital equipment and operational costs for the experiments to those of conventional equipment.

The UC solar house was built for the 2007 Solar Decathlon, an international competition among 20 elite global programs to design and build the world's best solar house.

Read the full article here.

Cincinnati Zoo named eco-tourism hotspot

The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden has made Plenty Magazine's list of American eco-tourism hotspots as part of an in-depth eco-travel series.

One of several dozen attractions to make the list, Plenty notes that the Zoo is "renowned nationwide" with its more than 500 animal species, its 3,000 plant species, and its abundant conservation programs.

The Serpent Mound in Adams County was the only other regional attraction to make the list.

Plenty's mission is to explore and document the green revolution that is taking place in the United States.

Read the full article here.

Thompson Hine establishes Climate Change and Sustainable Business Solutions group

Business law firm Thompson Hine has established a Climate Change and Sustainable Business Solutions group to help companies cope with the challenges faced when tackling environmental issues.

Steve Axtell, co-leader of the group, tells BusinessWire that the team is staying on top of current and expected legislation, and stands ready to help its clients stay abreast of new developments and opportunities.

Because climate change is such a complex policy area, the group is made up of people from a variety of legal disciplines, including environmental, energy, transportation, finance, intellectual property, trade, real estate, construction, and corporate law.

The group already has begun advising power producers, manufacturers, municipalities, colleges and universities.

Read the full release here.

BHDP makes top 100 green design firms

BDHP Architecture has been named as one of the top 100 green design firms in the United States by McGraw-Hill Construction's Engineering News-Record.

Companies are ranked based on 2007 design revenue from projects registered or certified under objective environmental or sustainable design standards such as the Green Building Initiative or the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED program.

The top 100 companies generated $1.74 billion in revenue from green projects in 2007.

Read the full release here.

Cincinnati Parks makes long term commitment to clean energy

With the installation of its second solar power system, the Cincinnati Park Board is furthering its mission of greening its operations. Third Sun Solar and Wind Power of Athens, Ohio recently installed the 10 kW solar array on the Park Board's headquarters building at 3215 Reading Road in Avondale. This array, along with solar and wind systems at their Eden Park building, will allow Cincinnati Parks to lock in part of their power costs for the next 30 years, protecting them from electricity inflation.

According to RenewableEnergyWorld.com, the renewable energy sources are part of Mayor Mark Mallory's green initiative and are expected to demonstrate the benefits of green energy to city residents.

Read the full article here.

Hamilton County municipalities meet for Green Development Summit

Leaders from Hamilton County's cities, villages and townships came together for a Green Development Summit last week to learn how they can work together to save the environment.

According to assistant Hamilton County administrator Jeff Aluotto, the event explored the ways in which the 48 different political subdivisions could put together an action plan for reducing greenhouse gases and lowering energy use, all while saving taxpayer money.

The summit is part of International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives, an international association of local governments committed to sustainable development.

The next step will be forming a volunteer committee to share ideas on what other communities are doing.

Read the full article here.

AMP electric car taking orders for initial production run

Advanced Mechanical Products, Inc. (AMP) is now taking orders for its first production run of electric vehicles, which the company hopes will make Cincinnati the "green capital of the world". The first run of 300 converted GM Saturn Sky vehicles will be made available on a first-come, first-served basis starting in 2009.

The cost of converting the car's combustion drive train to a fully-electric motor costs $25,000, plus the cost of the car. Engineers say that the car can travel 150 miles on a single charge and can achieve a top speed of 90 miles per hour.

AMP is only taking orders in the Greater Cincinnati area so that they can provide service from their local facility.

Read the full release here.

Worldfest scheduled for this week

The University of Cincinnati's 10-day Worldfest celebration continues this week with speakers, activities, films and food from around the globe.

For the first time, this year's event has a theme - going green.

According to the News Record, events will include:

  • "Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability and Peace" by Vandana Shiva, keynote speaker for Worldfest
  • "Art in the Human Garden", an exhibit that looks at the relationship between humans and their environment
  • A speech by Connie Bruins of Ten Thousand Villages on the importance of fair-trade commodities
  • A presentation by Breanna Harris and Chris Clements of Imago encouraging students to become active with environmental issues

Read the full article here.

Netherlands trip leaves Middletown official 'enlightened'

Middletown economic development coordinator Bill Murphy returned from a recent trip to the Netherlands "very enlightened" by how the Dutch approach economic development.

Murphy was part of a 15-member trade delegation led by the Cincinnati USA Partnership that included visits to Amsterdam and Rotterdam to study local practices in renewable and alternative energy, brownfield development and green architecture.

According to the Middletown Journal, Murphy says that, while Americans tend to think of 10 to 20 years as being "long-term", the Dutch consider resource allocation as far as 50 years out.

The delegation also included representatives from Hamilton, Cincinnati, and Blue Ash, as well as private sector developers and architects.

Read the full article here.

Big plans mark State of City

In front of an audience of nearly 600, Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory delivered his annual State of the City address in which he addressed the issues of public safety, jobs and economic development, neighborhood revitalization and public transportation.

The News Record reports that Mallory said that for the city to achieve the goals of the GO Cincinnati initiative, it must work harder to attract and retain young professionals.

To help strengthen the bond between Cincinnati and the young, he promised to work with city council to fund a co-op program between the University of Cincinnati and the city and has put his support behind a Downtown to Uptown streetcar connection.

Read the full article here.

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