Tag Archives: fuel efficiency

9 Reasons to Get Excited About Cars in 2014

Ford’s C-MAX Solar Energi Concept Car

Ford’s C-MAX Solar Energi Concept Car could reduce a driver's annual greenhouse gas emissions by four metric tons.

With the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) a wrap and the North American International Auto Show underway now, there has been a flurry of automobile news so far this year. While there were few truly groundbreaking announcements for alternative-fuel vehicles, there is plenty of good news to report. Thanks to increased fuel economy regulations, carmakers are continuing to tweak their cars to deliver more fuel economy at all levels of the market. While many innovations are ready to hit the roads, others are still aspirational ideas for the future. Here are nine reasons we’re excited about 2014’s new crop of cars and trucks.

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6 Eco-Friendly Snow Removal Ideas

Blue snow shovel

Photo: Bulldog1 via Flickr

Once the first big snowstorm hits every winter, the impending task of removing the snow and ice it leaves behind is in the forefront of many minds. Forget gas-guzzling snow blowers, harmful salt, and toxic chemicals, and use these environmental options instead.

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Vecarius: Taking the Heat…and Using It

Vecarius’s thermoelectric generator system improves the energy efficiency of vehicles ranging from light-duty vehicles produced by vehicle manufacturers to heavy-duty vehicles used by vehicle owners and operators of vehicle fleets. Photo Credit: RyanP77 via Compfight cc

Our global oil system is operating at near capacity—97 percent—which just isn’t sustainable. Because 70% of oil consumption in the U.S. is used for ground transportation, reducing the amount of gas used by vehicles is key to heading off an impending crisis. Boston-based Vecarius, which recently won the 2013 Sustainable America/Greentown Labs Fellowship, is working to tackle this problem by turning vehicles’ exhaust waste heat into energy, technology that can reduce fuel usage in vehicles by 5 to 10 percent. We talked to CEO Steven Casey to learn more about his innovative product.

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10 Ways to Feel Less Guilty About Waste This Christmas

10 Ways to Feel Less Guilty About Waste This Christmas

Did you know that household waste increases by more than 25 percent between Thanksgiving and New Year’s? Don’t be dismayed. You can help the planet by making a few smart choices this year. Here are 10 ideas for greening the season.

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The Sustainable America 2013 Gift Guide

Wrapped present

Photo Credit: kevin dooley via Compfight cc

If you’re still shopping for holiday gifts (and who isn’t), we’ve put together a great collection of gift ideas that will help anyone on your list live the sustainable lifestyle. We’ve got ideas for locavores, cooks, bike commuters, and anyone who likes to save money on gas (um, that’s everyone, right?)—as well as a few last-minute gifts you can whip up in your kitchen in a pinch.

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Vecarius Wins Sustainable America/Greentown Labs Fellowship

Boston skyline

Photo Credit: Sunset Noir via Compfight cc

We’re thrilled to announce the winner of the 2013 Sustainable America/Greentown Labs Fellowship. Vecarius, a vehicle waste-heat recovery company based in Boston, was chosen from a field of nine finalists who pitched their business ideas to a room of 60 entrepreneurs, investors, engineers, and students at a networking event Thursday at Greentown Labs in Somerville, Mass.

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7 Ways to Save Gas This Winter

7 Ways to Save Gas This Winter

Have you ever noticed that your car gets lower gas mileage in winter? It’s sad but true — most people experience a winter gas mileage drop — and the reasons are many. Find out why it happens and learn some surprisingly easy ways to can beat the winter gas-sapping blues in our latest infographic.

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5 (More) Anti-Idling Heroes

Rachael Lefevre is an anti-idling spokesperson

Rachael Lefevre is an anti-idling spokesperson for the Environmental Media Association. Photo: Gage Skidmore via Compfight cc

Back in July, we wrote about five people and organizations that were doing a great job of spreading awareness about idling. Every week we hear about more people and projects that are working to raise awareness about idling, so it’s already time to expand our list.

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Food and Fuel Event Calendar

Sustainable America Events

Part of our work here at Sustainable America is helping to spread the word and foster conversations about food and fuel issues. Here’s a quick update about some of the great events Sustainable America is going to be a part of this fall.

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5 Anti-Idling Videos We Love

Anti-Idling campaign

You’ve seen our anti-idling video, right? It’s part of our I Turn It Off campaign to end unnecessary idling. Well, It turns out that we’re not the only ones working to end unnecessary idling. Local governments, school districts and air quality agencies all over the country (and Canada) have take up the cause — and some of them have made their own videos. Some are slick, others homemade and campy, but they all share a common message: Stop idling! Here are some of our favorites.

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By the Numbers

Currently 50 million households suffer from food insecurity, meaning that family members cannot always meet their basic food needs.

10 million people a year could be fed through the recovery of just one-fifth of food waste.

Only 2% of food waste is composted or otherwise recycled—62% of paper is recycled.

Consumers throw out about 40% of the fresh and frozen fish they buy.

The U.S. produced 208 pounds of meat per person in 2009—60% more than Europe.

Low income commuters spend a much higher proportion of their wages on gas—8.6% versus 2.1% at $4 per gallon.

Food prices rose 35-40 percentage points between 2002–2008.

Americans consume 25% of the world’s produced oil, but our nation holds less than 3% of the world’s proven oil reserves.

The International Energy Agency says greenhouse gas emissions rose 3.2% last year, with a 9.3% increase in China offsetting declines in the US and EU.


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