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  • U.S. Carbon Dioxide Emissions Down 11 Percent Since 2007

    Carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels in the United States peaked at more than 1.6 billion tons of carbon in 2007. Since then they have fallen 11 percent, dropping to over 1.4 billion tons in 2013, according to estimates from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Emissions shrank rapidly during the recession, then bounced back slightly as the economy recovered. But shifting market conditions, pollution regulations, and changing behaviors are also behind the decline. More

  • The Energy Game is Rigged: Fossil Fuel Subsidies Topped $620 Billion in 2011

    The energy game is rigged in favor of fossil fuels because we omit the environmental and health costs of burning coal, oil, and natural gas from their prices. Subsidies manipulate the game even further. According to conservative estimates from the Global Subsidies Initiative and the International Energy Agency (IEA), governments around the world spent more than $620 billion to subsidize fossil fuel energy in 2011. More

  • The Real Costs of Bottled Water

    Bottled water is sold to us as a fresh, healthy, and pure product. Yet in reality, when you buy a bottle of water you’re may just be buying back your local tap water at a mark-up of up to 1000 times the actual cost. Not only is bottled water no better for you than plain old tap water, but the environmental cost of the packaging used to beautify it is a serious issue. More

  • Governments Spend $1.4 Billion Per Day to Destabilize Climate

    We distort reality when we omit the health and environmental costs associated with burning fossil fuels from their prices. When governments actually subsidize their use, they take the distortion even further. Worldwide, direct fossil fuel subsidies added up to roughly $500 billion in 2010. More

  • U.S. Carbon Emission Down 7 Percent in Four Years, Even Bigger Drops Coming

    By Lester R. Brown Between 2007 and 2011, carbon emissions from coal use in the United States dropped 10 percent. During the same period, emissions from oil use dropped 11 percent. In contrast, carbon emissions from natural gas use increased by 6 percent. The net effect of these trends was that U.S. carbon emissions dropped […] More

  • Learning from China: Why the Existing Economic Model Will Fail

    By Lester R. Brown For almost as long as I can remember we have been saying that the United States, with 5 percent of the world’s people, consumes a third or more of the earth’s resources. That was true. It is no longer true. Today China consumes more basic resources than the United States does. […] More

  • The Manufactured Demand for Bottled Water [VIDEO]

    Why do people drink bottled water? Bottled water makes about as much sense as shipping in ice from Antarctica. Learn about manufactured demand from a video made by the people at The Story of Stuff. More

  • 3 Essential Vegan Condiments

    Here are 3 condiments I couldn’t imagine life without. [social_buttons] I was going to include the condiments below in my list of favorite foods the other day, but then more and more foods came to my mind and I decided that these might fit better in a list of their own. To combine with many […] More

  • Offshore Wind, Not Offshore Oil

    By Janet Larsen The enormously devastating oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is just one reminder that stretching out an addiction to a polluting and planet-warming fossil fuel poses risks to our health, our environment, and our economy. U.S. oil production peaked in 1970 at 9.6 million barrels per day. Since then production has […] More

  • US Car Fleet Shrinks by Four Million in 2009

    America’s century-old love affair with the automobile may be coming to an end. The U.S. fleet has apparently peaked and started to decline. In 2009, the 14 million cars scrapped exceeded the 10 million new cars sold, shrinking the U.S. fleet by 4 million, or nearly 2 percent in one year. While this is widely […] More

  • Final Day For Trans-Fats In California

    For all California residents with a hankering for trans-fats, today may be your last day to get them, at least as easily as you could before.  A law signed in 2008 takes effect January 1, 2010 that bans retail food establishments, restaurants, and bakeries from using trans-fats in their products. California is the first state […] More

  • Driving Unsustainability: How GM planned for obsolescence

    I’m coming to the conclusion that there’s very little that’s sustainable about the company known as GM. It’s frustrating and sad, because I was raised in the auto city and had family members who worked in the industry.  I even spent a summer at the GM Tech Center (working for then EDS as an intern […] More

  • An Interview with Josh Tickell About His New Film, Fuel

    When I first met Josh Tickell a few years ago, he was a blonde-haired, baby-faced, young man driving around the country in a diesel van painted with yellow sunflowers that he was running on used fast food vegetable oil. He called it the Veggie Van and he was an unabashed biofuel evangelist. I asked Josh […] More

  • Book Review: Andrew Nikiforuk’s Tar Sands: Dirty Oil and the Future of a Continent

    Northern Alberta’s vast stores of bitumen–a.k.a. “tar sands” or “oil sands” or “dirty oil”–may well be one of the worst environmental tragedies you never heard of. At least that is what Andrew Nikiforuk, a prize-winning Canadian journalist, wants you to believe. In his recent book Tar Sands: Diry Oil and the Future of a Continent, […] More

  • Exxon Oil and Gas Project to Face Russian Legal Challenge Over Endangered Whales

    Russian environmental groups have today launched a legal challenge against a consortium led by U.S. oil and gas giant Exxon, for threatening critically endangered whales in the far east of the country. Last year, Russian authorities gave Exxon the green light to build a pipeline across a lagoon on Sakhalin Island that is a crucial […] More

  • A Perilous Walk in a Plastic World

    Out once again for my daily constitutional and communion–another long morning walk–I blow slowly down this country road like the breeze in the Lynyrd Skynyrd song, like so many other wisps of Earth’s breath from time immemorial, like a ghost haunting some sacred ground. With my every organ of sensory input wide open and on […] More

  • Environmental Defense Fund: Transportation by the Numbers

    With gas prices steep, public transit ridership is at an all-time high. Instead of cutting back on public transportation services, we should be reforming our national transportation system to create more affordable travel options for the whole country. Check out these facts about oil and gas to learn more. 96 Percent of the world’s transportation […] More

  • Can Big Oil Companies also Do Good?

    We seem to be piggybacking off of each other here around Green Options lately – reading each others’ posts and writing new posts based on them. I just finished reading the post that Adam Williams wrote earlier today, World Naked Bike Ride: Is Anything Gained by Protesting Oil Dependency in the Buff?, and in the […] More

  • How a Billionaire Candy Man Fights Energy Companies

    In many western states, landowners don’t necessarily own the minerals beneath their own property. This allows energies companies, in some cases, to drop in and drill. That doesn’t sit well with one wealthy Montana resident. Forrest E. Mars, Jr. is the billionaire owner of the Mars Candy Company, the wonderful people who bring us treats […] More

  • Book Review: David Sandalow’s Freedom from Oil

    The phrase “oil addiction” has been uttered and written countless times since George W. Bush used it in his 2006 State of the Union address. While many still rightly question the current President’s commitment to ending US dependence on oil, David Sandalow, assistant secretary of state and senior director on the National Security Council during […] More