Congratulations to The Photo Specialists in Dubuque

That was the first Iowa business (and as of June 23 the only Iowa business) to sign on to Greenpeace’s “Businesses for a Safe Climate” petition.

Click the link to read the list of more than 200 businesses that have signed the petition so far. Here is the text:

“As a business owner, it concerns me that Congress has yet to take serious action on global warming. Leading scientists and economists have identified the steps that we need to take in order to curb global warming and move toward the prosperity of a green economy. I call on Congress to follow these steps and pass legislation that will…

1) Create 5 million Green Jobs in order to conserve 20% of our energy by 2015 and create pathways out of poverty for people.

2) Freeze climate pollution levels now, then cut by at least 25% below 1990 levels by 2020 and 80% by 2050.

3) End development of new coal plants that emit global warming pollution. Pivot boldly away from fossil fuel dependence, and toward a clean energy future with strong standards and incentives for energy efficiency and renewable energy.

_____________ believes in being a responsible member of the community. As such, we commit to examine and create a plan to reduce our carbon footprint in order to minimize our impact on the environment. We are doing our part, now it’s time for Congress to do theirs.”

If you know of a business that might be recruited to sign this petition, click here.

If you would like to list your business among those that have signed the petition, click here.

Many scientists expect global warming to increase the incidence of extreme weather such as the rainfall that caused catastrophic floods in Iowa this month.

It’s a good time for business owners to lend their support to efforts to reduce global warming, especially since some advocacy groups for business oppose further regulation of greenhouse-gas emissions.  

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Help Greenpeace get toxics out of computers

It’s not Iowa political news, but since all of us here use computers, I thought this Greenpeace campaign would be of interest to the community.

Greenpeace has been ranking mobile and personal computer manufacturers on “on their global policies and practice on eliminating harmful chemicals and on taking responsibility for their products once they are discarded by consumers.”

Click through to read more details about the criteria Greenpeace uses for their rankings. The idea is to get the corporations to remove the most toxic chemicals, such as PVC, from their products:

Substituting harmful chemicals in the production of electronics will prevent worker exposure to these substances and contamination of communities that neighbor production facilities. Eliminating harmful substances will also prevent leaching/off-gassing of chemicals like brominated flame retardants (BFR) during use, and enable electronic scrap to be safely recycled. The presence of toxic substances in electronics perpetuates the toxic cycle – during reprocessing of electronic waste and by using contaminated secondary materials to make new products.

After hearing from 20,000 people, Apple became the first company to respond to the Greenpeace campaign, announcing plans this week to produce a “greener” Apple:

Apple has declared a phase out of the worst chemicals in its product range, Brominated Fire Retardants (BFRs) and Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) by 2008. That beats Dell and other computer manufacturer’s pledge to phase them out by 2009.

Click through for more information; Apple could still do much more to promote recycling of the company’s products, especially outside the U.S.

If you want to join this Powerbook user in taking action on this issue, or if you want to learn more about Greenpeace’s online campaigns, click here.

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