Dan Miner's sustainability, resilience and business initiatives
NYC Can Capture Carbon to Cope with the Climate Crisis
- While Cutting Waste Disposal Costs
We're in a global climate crisis, but we can still avoid the worst case scenarios. Check out the Drawdown Project, a collection of the top 100 methods, extensively researched by scientists, to stop the increase in greenhouse gases and put them into reverse.
There are many ways to reduce carbon emissions by cutting fossil fuel use. It's also essential to capture carbon in solid form and keep it from going back into the atmosphere, and there are just a few ways to do it. The one most accessible to NYC is pyrolysis of carbon-containing organic materials, the process of heating them in the absence of oxygen, which produces charcoal-like products. The organic materials could be agricultural wastes, dead trees, animal manure - or sewage sludge. NYC pays $50 million a year to haul 1,400 tons per day of sewage waste biosolids to faraway landfills. Here's an introduction on how NYC could carbonize that waste stream. It would save money, and open up an entirely new way for NYC to reduce its carbon emissions. It would also make NYC a model for all the world's cities to do the same.
Action step: ask NYC Council to hold a hearing on NYC DEP's research into biosolids disposal alternatives. Environmental and civic groups are invited to sign onto this letter.
Making NYC Building Lighting More Energy Efficient with LEDs
One of the best ways to reduce electricity use and carbon emissions is to replace fluorescent lights with LEDs. With LED prices going down and their energy efficiency continuing to rise, LEDs are quickly becoming the standard for lighting around the world. An LED upgrade for your apartment building's common area lighting will pay for itself in 2-3 years, and will soon be required by NYC law. More on LEDs and how to upgrade.
Local Projects in Forest Hills, Queens
The volunteers with Forest Hills Green Team have reactivated the school garden at Metropolitan Expeditionary Learning School, started a school garden at Forest Hills High School, and are landscaping the Yellowstone Overpass area. We're operating with the guidance of Beyond Organic Design, a permaculture education group, and are focusing on hardy perennials and pollinators.