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Tagged : illinois


Guess who’s building the nation’s first net-zero retail store?

March 27th, 2013

A retailer who’ve come to rely on for cough syrup, toothpaste and greeting cards has decided to push the envelope on green energy with a model net-zero store that hopes to turn a loss — of energy costs.


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New York approves enviro-friendly B Corps; Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Illinois could be next

February 16th, 2012

B Corps, or benefit corporations, have arrived in the state of New York.
Earlier this month, the legislature passed, and Gov. Cuomo signed, a bill (S.79-A) approving this new type of corporate structure in which companies promise to have a positive impact on the environment and watch out for the rights of workers and communities.
State officials then immediately registered 13 companies as B Corps on Feb 10, the same day the law was enacted.


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High speed rail (tea-)bagged by politics

February 17th, 2011

If you like trains, now would be a good time to speak up about it. Money for Amtrak and for proposed high speed passenger trains is on the budget block, awaiting the guillotine of lawmakers in Washington who want to cut funds for all sorts of programs that could improve our lives, green our transportation and keep America working and moving toward the future.

Yes, the country is in tight straits. People are out of work. We have a budget deficit. But we have to push on. When we have before, well, we’ve gone to the moon. We’ve turned the tide in world wars. Should getting to St. Louis be that difficult?


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Playing chicken with high speed trains in Wisconsin

November 8th, 2010

Last week, Ohio and Wisconsin both elected new governors who campaigned to clamp down on federal spending, including ending high speed rail projects being queued up with stimulus money in their states.

Almost immediately the pro- and anti-train forces chugged into action. In Wisconsin sitting Gov. Jim Doyle, a big supporter of high speed rail, called a temporary halt to the project, throwing into question 400 construction jobs and the promise of perhaps ten times as many later on.

Across the Great Lakes, in New York, Gov.-elect Andrew Cuomo reacted by quickly raising his hand for the $823 million in federal train funds that could become available if Wisconsin spurns the project.


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Eco gas for homes a new option for Illinois consumers

October 25th, 2010

Illinois residents and businesses just got more options for heating their homes or workplaces with a new biogas/natural gas mixture.
The new blend, of 8 percent biogas captured from landfills and other sources and 92 percent natural gas, is available from Integrys Energy Services, a subsidiary of Integrys Energy Group.


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Great Lakes Wind partners with BlueGreen Alliance to create more U.S. jobs

October 18th, 2010

GLWN, also known as the Great Lakes Wind Network, has teamed up with the BlueGreen Alliance Foundation to help bring more small and medium manufacturers into the developing U.S. wind energy business.

The partnership will help these smaller firms build capacity so they can supply parts for North American wind turbines, and in turn, strengthen growing U.S. wind markets.

Part of the money for this joint project will come from the National Institute of Standards and Technology‘s (NIST) Clean Energy Manufacturing Center, which is trying to help U.S. manufacturers find a place on the production chain for wind power.


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Renovation announced for Chicago’s Union Station

October 4th, 2010

Union Station will get an expanded lobby and other improvements with an ARRA-funded renovation. (Art source: Midwest High Speed Rail Association.)


Chicago’s Union Station will be getting what many see as a long-needed renovation to accommodate heavy traffic.
Amtrak Board Chairman Tom Carper and Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn announced a $40 million capital construction project for the iconic downtown train hub, which will double the size of the passenger waiting area, add new restrooms and air conditioning to the “Great Hall”.


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Chicago’s plan to convert an Underground Railroad stop into eco-tourism site gets new ideas

June 30th, 2010


Naomi Davis has proselytized about the redevelopment of Chicago’s blighted Riverdale neighborhood as a green community so much that nine years into the effort she continues to galvanize support to help map out a plan.


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EPA announces plan to clean up Great Lakes and fight those ginormous invading fish

February 22nd, 2010

From Green Right Now Reports

Even after monumental clean-ups that rescued the Great Lakes from acid rain and industrial dumping in the 20th Century, these national water resources continue to suffer environmental assaults.

Sewage overflows into the lakes — some 25 billion gallons of untreated sewage from 20 cities in 2008 — have resulted in waters that periodically test positive for dangerous levels of E coli in 2008, according to a report by the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Asian Carp  (Photo: US Fish and Wildlife Service.)

Asian Carp (Photo: US Fish and Wildlife Service.)


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Governors agree to keep Midwestern High Speed Rail plan on track

July 28th, 2009

From Green Right Now Reports:

Eight Midwestern states have agreed to work toward the common goal of developing high speed rail in the Midwest, and hope to access $8 billion in earmarked federal dollars to fund the new services.

Governors from those states — Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin — signed an agreement on Monday, saying they support each other in seeking federal dollars to build a high speed rail network. The hub of the network would be in the Windy City, and Chicago Mayor Richard Daley along with five of the governors attended the Midwest High Speed Rail Summit to solidify the agreement.

Chicago already serves as a hub for Amtrak and many freight lines. The new plan would bring high speed rail into the mix, which advocates say could transform and green transportation in the the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes regions.


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New Illinois wind projects would power 200,000 homes

June 15th, 2009

From Green Right Now Reports

Mainstream Renewable Power, the global renewable energy company based in Dublin, today announced its first U.S. investment, purchasing a portfolio of wind farm projects in Illinois with the potential to generate 787 megawatts — enough energy to power 200,000 homes — by 2013. All of the wind projects are located within 100 miles of Chicago.

The company said it acquired the assets from local wind farm developers Bruce and Joyce Papiech of FPC Services for an undisclosed price. The portfolio comprises three separate projects at various stages of development and will require an investment of more than $1.69 billion over a four-year period to fully develop.


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Finding local food can be cruciferous, get help with the NRDC local food finder

May 21st, 2009

By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now

We all need to start eating closer to home, and with all due respect, I don’t mean down at the corner KFC.

I’m talking about finding fresh, locally grown produce for home cooking. Do we even need to list the reasons? Buying local food cuts down on polluting “food miles”, bypasses refrigeration trucks, supports local farmers and puts nutrient-rich foods on our plates.

But unless you grow a lot of your own food, how can you distinguish what came from your friendly local farmer in Illinois (or Texas or California) from what came from a rain forest-encroaching big-Ag operation 2,000 miles away?


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