23 Jun 2021

Green Team Newsletter: June 2021


In this June edition of the Green Team newsletter we’re proud to highlight the green cleaning practices that help make HBS a healthier community, while also covering Harvard research and advocacy that aims to clean up the climate and improve the health of the global community.

C&W Services Awarded CIMS Certification with Honors for Green Building Criteria

The HBS custodial services vendor, C&W Services, was recently awarded CIMS certification with honors for Green Building Criteria. The Cleaning Institute Management Standards (CIMS) illustrates that a company follows proper procedures for a comprehensive green cleaning program. Green cleaning products and procedures contribute to healthier surroundings for all community members, especially cleaning staff, while minimizing the overall impact on the environment. Strategies include promoting the conservation of energy, water, and chemicals used for cleaning, as well as reducing the toxicity of the cleaning chemicals needed for disinfection.  

"This certification shows that C&W is dedicated to providing its clients with the latest best practices, technology, and materials to ensure exceptional cleaning operations and green cleaning. C&W is one of the few companies operating that is CIMS certified with honors and we are proud to implement this standard of green cleaning at HBS,” explained Nicole Messuri, associate director of Custodial and Fitness Services in HBS Operations. Thank you to all of the C&W Services team at HBS for being a part of this accomplishment!  

Harvard Climate Research Spotlight

A new Harvard paper by Geoffrey Supran and Naomi Oreskes analyzes hundreds of sources, including “advertorials” and internal company documents, to show the fossil fuel industry’s ongoing strategy to delay meaningful climate action. Read an excerpt from their research below:

A dominant public narrative about climate change is that ‘we are all to blame.’ Another is that society must inevitably rely on fossil fuels for the foreseeable future. How did these become conventional wisdom? We show that one source of these arguments is fossil fuel industry propaganda. ExxonMobil advertisements worked to shift responsibility for global warming away from the fossil fuel industry and onto consumers. They also said that climate change was a “risk,” rather than a reality, that renewable energy is unreliable, and that the fossil fuel industry offered meaningful leadership on climate change. We show that much of this rhetoric is similar to that used by the tobacco industry. Our research suggests warning signs that the fossil fuel industry is using the subtle micro-politics of language to downplay its role in the climate crisis and to continue to undermine climate litigation, regulation, and activism.

In the News

Green Tip

Subscribe to Harvard C-CHANGE’s The Climate Optimist and enjoy this “Bonus Feel-Good Feature” featuring Gina McCarthy—former Harvard C-CHANGE director, Boston native, and White House national climate advisor—who spoke with Axios about why she’s optimistic about our future.

More Highlights from The Climate Optimist (subscribe here):

  • The energy sector can achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, and can do it cost-effectively via a "narrow but achievable" pathway.
  • If we cut methane emissions in half by 2030, we can prevent a half-degree of warming by 2050, 260k premature deaths, 775k asthma hospitalizations, and 25m tons of crop losses annually.
  • “Wind, solar,and other non-fuel combusting renewable energy are the healthiest energy sources available for generating electricity, powering our factories, and heating our homes,” according to HSPH researcher Jonathan Buonocore's new study. 

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