The Futon Shop:
Sustainable Businesses practices.
Sustainable Silicon Valley (SSV) was formed as a multi-stakeholder collaborative initiative to produce significant environmental improvement and resource conservation in Silicon Valley through the development and implementation of a regional environmental management system (EMS).
Formed in 2001 as a project of California EPA, Santa Clara Valley Water District (SCVWD), Silicon Valley Leadership Group (SVLG) and Silicon Valley Environmental Partnership (SVEP), SSV became independent in 2004. We use a systematic ‘plan-do-check-adjust’ environmental management approach to accelerate CO2 emissions, water reduction goals and economic returns.
EcoCloud is a project of Sustainable Silicon Valley (SSV) in conjunction with public and private sector partners, is a virtual space where business leaders and facility managers can work with technology innovators, researchers, and government agencies to make enterprises more sustainable and profitable. Drawing on the latest social networking tools, participants can collaborate, learn, plan, and make valuable connections.
Here are their four focus areas
Energy is the key aspect or resource that allows earth’s various systems, including human cultural systems, industries and economies to survive adapt and grow. It is a natural capital that we as humans harness, convert and make use of in our daily lives.Various resources like the sun, wind, water flows, fossil fuels or nuclear power are able to provide us the energy that we need to survive and grow today. However, in the interest of sustainability, there is one category that interests us the most, which is Renewable Energy.
Renewable energy, like solar-energy or wind-energy, is that which does not use or consume its resource faster than it is replenished, while Non Renewable energy, like fossil-fuel energy, will eventually deplete its resource within the near and foreseeable time span of our existence.
2) Urban Water
The Materials Flow Cycleis the underlying indicator of direct human impacts on the environment due in part to human consumption. This impact is reduced by not only consuming less but by also making the full cycle of production, use, and disposal more sustainable. The diagram below describes the conventional flow of material resources through supply, production, consumption, and disposal or recycling.
4) According to the Environmental Defense Fund, roughly 20% of our greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. come from transportation. Much of our country has grown up around the automobile, which was considered a clean tech option when it started to replace horse transport in New York City, but the downsides of the technology have made themselves known and as climate change and population growth become more urgent issues we need to start reducing our reliance on our cars.
This issue goes far beyond people making different choices, because in most cities in the U.S. those choices don’t realistically exist. Even the greenest commuter is going to hesitate at a quadrupling their travel time in order to take the bus. Appreciating that fact, many cities and communities are working multi-modal enabling into their sustainability plans in order to reduce auto dependence for meeting needs of transportation to work, services, and entertainment. In fact, as cities in California are required to establish Climate Action Plans and make goals for reduced GHG emissions, there is no away to avoid the transportation piece. Alternative fuel vehicles are helping to some extent, but as communities move forward with broad sustainability plans, the single passenger car needs to be phased out—for space, for health, and for the climate.
There are a number of established tools that enable multimodal transport, and this site will be examining each one in turn:
- Transit Oriented Development
- Ride Sharing
- Bus Rapid Transit
- Congestion Pricing
- Highway Removal
- Traffic Calming
- Road Diet
- Price of Parking
- Parking Reform
- Incentivizing/improving public transportation
- Satellite work offices/work from home