6-4-17 NRDC and the Center For Energy Efficiency Standards, Energy & Transportation Program: Lauren Urbaneck, senior energy policy advisor, Natural Resources Defense Council. Energy Star and other energy-saving programs are at risk in 2018 proposed budget. This popular and widely successful program is on the federal budget’s chopping block. Energy efficiency is the best solution to lessen mounting demands — it saves money, creates American jobs (more than 2.2 million including in your state), and increases business competitiveness. Less pollution also decreases severe health risks like asthma, respiratory illness, and chronic illnesses. ENERGY STAR is among the most successful public-private partnerships in U.S. history: It is the collaboration with more than 16,000 participating companies and organizations with enormous consumer awareness and support. Savings to the consumer: $50 million annual investment into $30+ billion worth of annual customer utility bill savings. ENERGY STAR is a labeling program that helps consumers and businesses select a more energy efficient appliance model —usually among the top 25% most efficient on the market. 70 product categories range from water heaters, light bulbs, air conditioners, and computers, to office buildings and new homes. Many leading manufacturers tweak their designs to ensure their products meet ENERGY STAR criteria and are eligible for the rebates. Homes that are at least 15% more efficient than the local building energy code qualify for ENERGY STAR certification. In 2015 alone, families living in ENERGY STAR certified homes saved more than $625 million on their utility bills. ENERGY STAR It is a cost-effective, market-based tool for saving money, reducing harmful emissions, strengthening energy security and reducing stress on the grid: ENERGY STAR was created in 1992 under President George H. W. Bush’s administration and has maintained strong bipartisan support for more than 25 years.
6-4-17 Steve Casner on his new book, Careful: A User’s Guide to Our Injury-Prone Minds. After a hundred years of steady improvement, the rate at which people are being injured in everyday accidents is sharply increasing. As doctors and medical researchers work busily to extend our lives, more people each year are figuring out ways to cut them short. Car crashes, pedestrian fatalities, home improvement projects gone wrong, mistaken medical diagnoses, adventure sports, even cockroach-eating contests: we’re finding diverse and creative new ways to put our bodies in harm’s way. But according to Steve Casner, who has spent the past twenty years at NASA ensuring the safety of people who hurtle through the atmosphere at the speed of sound, and whose studies on safety have received critical media attention from such publications as The New Yorker and Scientific American, there’s no such thing as an accident. Casner insists these injuries are preventable and that we can take back control of our own well-being. Now, he shares his new book, Careful: A User’s Guide to Our Injury-Prone Minds. By sharing stories of real accidents alongside the simple techniques that could have been used to prevent them, Careful offers a new understanding of how our sometimes fallible minds work so that we increase our chances of getting through the day in one piece. Steve Casner is a research psychologist who studies the accident-prone mind.
6-4-17 Ann Graves Acting Director Seattle Animal Shelter Furry 5K Fundraiser
6-4-17 David Callahan’s THE GIVERS: Wealth, Power, and Philanthropy in a New Gilded Age: The book’sfocus is on philanthropy in America and the work of elite philanthropists. While we often hear about famous philanthropists such as Bill Gates and Charles Koch, there are thousands of other wealthy donors who are at work below the radar promoting a wide range of causes – everything from education, the environment, science, LGBT rights and more. As Callahan points out, philanthropy is a complex topic, and certainly not clear-cut. On the one hand, many wealthy philanthropists are donating lots of money earlier and earlier in their careers and donating amounts that can truly make a difference. On the other hand, these donations allow them to influence a lot of policy in this country, bringing into question the state of our democracy. Based on extensive research and interviews with countless donors and policy experts, this is not a brief for or against the Givers, but a fascinating investigation of a power shift in American society that has implications for us all.