Category Archives: Eco Travel

Green Collar Jobs Analyzed

When “green collar” jobs became a buzzword in the mid-2000s, many thought it was the wave of the future. And for a while, it was: there was a surge in environmentally oriented activity in the world’s biggest economies and even several developing ones. About a decade on, however, the trend seems to have hit a plateau, at least in the US. Only 2.4 percent of Americans were employed in green jobs in 2010, much lower than projected, according to a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). On the bright side, the growth has been steady, albeit small, and green jobs have spread so that there are options for aspiring green collars anywhere. The study considered jobs in sectors focused on producing renewable energy, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, recycling, reducing pollution, and conserving natural resources.

Only six states had more than 100,000 green jobs reported, the report showed. California had the most with 338,400 jobs, with New York a distant second with 248,500. The rest include Texas, Pennsylvania, Illinois, and Ohio. This doesn’t necessarily make them the greenest job markets, though: since they’re also among the largest states, the numbers are understandable.

In terms of how much of the total jobs were classified as green, Vermont led the pack with a ratio of 4.4 percent. Following close were D.C. and Idaho with 3.9 and 3.7 percent respectively. Other top rankers include Maryland, Alaska, Montana, Oregon, Colorado, Washington, and Pennsylvania, all of which had ratios above 3 percent.

An analysis from The Atlantic magazine suggests that the green job market depends largely upon income and education. States with a higher median income and whose population has a large percentage of college graduates tend to have more green jobs. An even stronger correlation was found between green jobs and knowledge-based and creative economies—states with a large market for research, recreation, and the arts. Subsequently, states where unskilled workers are numerous have much fewer green-collar employment options.

What the numbers could mean is that more green jobs might come along, but will not necessarily open up opportunities for lower-skilled workers, nor will it make much of a difference in industrialized states. It might have something to do with the financial crisis as staying afloat overtakes environmental thrusts in the private sector, but as the economy stabilizes over the next few years, more green collar jobs may open up for a wider range of workers.

 

Eco Cottages

For the past few years, lifestyle and travel circles have taken notice of eco cottages—a new class of dwellings that offer eco-friendly features in a chic, stylish package. From floor to ceiling, they make use of natural products and run entirely, or almost entirely, on clean energy. The idea is that comfort and aesthetic don’t have to take a backseat to environmental consciousness. In an eco cottage, one can live the good life without the guilt.

The first eco cottages were built, understandably, in touristy cities known for their strong environmental thrust. Developers in Australia, the U.K., and Canada have long been working on eco-friendly homes. The designs first cropped up in hotels and exclusive communities, then more and more into residential areas. Features such as solar panels and energy-efficient windows were especially popular as “eco luxury” perks before they went mainstream.

Eco cottages run along the same lines, except that they appeal to more than just green thumbs. More and more, designers are making it so that even strictly in terms of style and practicality, eco cottages can hold their own alongside world-class accommodations. Although they tend to be smaller, smart interior design and usually good locations make them just as sleek and comfortable as five-star hotels.

Most eco cottages are built in modular styles in which prefabricated parts are fitted together. This makes for a faster and thus more energy-efficient way to build. It’s also a “portable” method, meaning it can be carried out in any setting: urban or rural, warm or cold, highland or lowland. Of course, since there are fewer work hours involved, it also ends up cheaper for the end buyer—a typical cottage can go for about $50,000, the price of an entry-level RV. Developers are also starting to rent them out as an eco-friendly alternative to hotels, especially in less-trodden areas (such as small villages and rainforests).

Needless to say, energy consumption is what sets eco cottages apart. They are built to use natural light and cooling as much as possible, with ample windows and naturally insulating materials. The best eco houses are almost self-efficient and self-sustaining. Parts that do require electricity, such as heating and night-time lighting, make use of solar or wind energy (the latter is often for more demanding appliances such as dishwashers and audio systems). For heating, there are usually combined water heating and heat recovery systems, which cut down energy consumption by almost half.

Low Impact Travel

Travelling is a great learning experience. To visit other cultures and immerse yourself in the way other groups of people live can be life changing, and also widen our perspectives. If you can do this and also leave intact or improve the places you go, even better!

Places that become famous holiday destinations in less developed countries can end up abused due to the volume of people arriving there without the infrastructure to handle the increase.

Creating a win-win for you and the community of the place you visit can be achieved a number of ways. A couple of examples are home stays with locals where the money you spend on your accommodation benefits the community directly or working in the community for part of your stay such as helping to build houses for families for example.

We aim to find a balance for the discerning traveller so learning from other cultures can take place but with less impact on the communities and the environment in these delicate locations.

trymax мотосервис