Zerofootprint Youth Calculator empowers world youth to reduce resource consumption
Today’s youth are taking the future into their own hands in over 100 countries through the Zerofootprint Youth Calculator initiative that engages them in a worldwide network to measure, compare and change their behavior. As both a carbon calculator and social engagement platform, the Zerofootprint Youth Calculator connects young people to one another around the world to mitigate their collective carbon footprint. Already during Phase 1, over 230,000 active users have committed to a reduction of 150,000 tons of CO2 released into Earth’s atmosphere and our Oceans.
Earth Day 2013 – Launch of Phase 2
On Earth Day, the Zerofootprint Youth Calculator will launch a new platform in English, French, Spanish, Hebrew and Arabic. Through a partnership with iEARN (International Education and Resource Network), Phase 2 hopes to scale up to 1,000,000 active users and achieve a reduction of 600,000 tons of CO2 by Earth Day 2014.
iEARN’s database of over 60,000 schools in more than 130 countries enables Zerofootprint’s Youth Calculator to reach over 2,000,000 students. A partnership with WGBH Boston’s “Meet the Greens” initiative expands this reach even further.
Partners and volunteer translators wanted
In order to be accessible to children around the globe by Earth Day 2014, Zerofootprint seeks volunteers to help translate the platform into fifty languages. Find out how you can help youth take the future into their own hands through the Zerofootprint Youth Calculator by becoming a partner or volunteer translator. Please contact us at [email protected].
Zerofootprint’s VELO™ social energy programs have engaged hundreds of thousands of people around the world since 2005. The company’s solutions include a mix of program design, services, and technology based on the VELO software platform. The company has completed both large- and small-scale social sustainability programs for educational institutions, corporations, community programs, green cities, and green buildings. Zerofootprint’s groundbreaking programs have been recognized by the Clinton Global Initiative, the United Nations, the US Department of Energy, and the White House.
iEARN (International Education and Resource Network) is a non-profit organization made up of over 60,000 schools and youth organizations in more than 130 countries. Since 1988, iEARN has pioneered on-line school linkages to enable students to engage in meaningful educational projects with peers in their own countries and around the world. Over 2,000,000 students each day are engaged in collaborative project work worldwide.
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Spotlighting innovations in urban sustainability and connected technology
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I spoke last week with Krishna Desai from Cubic Transportation, and we discussed three big problems facing transportation, and the ways that Cubic is approaching these challenges:
1) If (or when) more workers return to traditional on-location jobs, but feel a lingering distrust of crowded spaces, people who can afford it may opt for private cars instead of using public transit for their commute. This will create a massive influx of cars on roads that were already crowded, and more financial woes for transit agencies already dealing with budget shortfalls. Krishna told me about a suite of optimization tools Cubic is deploying in places like Mexico and San Francisco to make public transit more efficient, more transparent, and, overall, more attractive to riders.
2) For the time being, though, we’re dealing with the opposite problem. How can transit agencies find ways to influence user behavior in a way that complies with social distancing and capacity requirements? How can you incentivize riders to wait for the next bus? (In a way that doesn’t alienate them forever – see #1). Cubic has deployed a loyalty/advertising program in Miami-Dade County that was originally intended to increase ridership, but is now being used to help control crowding and social distancing on transit.
3) Transportation infrastructure, in generally, was not built to accomodate 6-feet of separation between riders – or between workers. Little things like, for example, opening gates, requires workers to be closer than 6-feet to riders, and there are examples like that throughout every transit hub. Technology can help, but creating and implementing software/hardware solutions quickly and efficiently requires experience with innovation, deployment, maintenance and more. Cubic has a program called Project Rebound that shows the possibilities.
Advanced Urban Visioning offers a powerful tool for regions that are serious about achieving a major transformation in their sustainability and resilience. By clarifying what optimal transportation networks look like for a region, it can give planners and the public a better idea of what is possible. It inverts the traditional order of planning, ensuring that each mode can make the greatest possible contribution toward achieving future goals.
Advanced Urban Visioning doesn’t conflict with government-required planning processes; it precedes them. For example, the AUV process may identify the need for specialized infrastructure in a corridor, while the Alternatives Analysis process can now be used to determine the time-frame where such infrastructure becomes necessary given its role in a network.