GreenBiz Weekly Roundup: Beijing's Polluters List, SF Giants Green Their Laundry and More

GreenBiz Weekly Roundup: Beijing's Polluters List, SF Giants Green Their Laundry and More

Image CC licensed by FANG Chen[email protected]/2368114175

Today we inaugurate a weekly roundup of news briefs to supplement our daily articles.

Beijing's Top Polluters List Causes Tempest in a Beverage Bottle

The Beijing Development and Reform Commission and Beijing Environmental Protection Bureau created a stir this week by issuing a list of what they claimed were the top polluters in the capital. The list of 27 firms included the Beijing Coca-Cola and PepsiCo plants, even though the Coke and Pepsi facilities had not exceeded emissions standards -- a point that a spokesman for the bureau conceded on Thursday.

The spokesman told the China Daily that the beverage plants are large users of water, and the environmental authorities believe the facilities can improve their environmental performance and were therefore put on the list. "The listed companies have reached the Chinese standards for pollutants emission," the China Daily quoted the spokesman as saying. "But there is no best, but better, in environmental protection.

SF Giants Become First U.S. Pro Team to Green Its Laundry

Uniforms, towels and other laundry from the San Francisco Giants' clubhouse are now washed with Herbatergent, which is made by the Vaska Company and formulated from herbs and botanical cleaning agents. Based in Berkeley and a wholly owned subsidiary of HepaHope Korea, Vaska says that by using its products the team has become the first professional sports organization in the U.S. to use green laundry products.

In July, the Royal Laundry in South San Francisco, the largest privately owned commercial laundry on the West Coast, began using Vaska products on the million pounds of laundry it washes every week. Royal Laundry handles the wash for more than 100 hotels in Northern California.

Marriott Vacation Club Switches to Key Cards Made of Recycled Material

Following the lead of its corporate parent, the Marriott Vacation Club is replacing the 1.2 million plastic key cards used at its timeshare resorts with cards made of 50 percent recycled material. Marriott says the move will prevent 4 tons of plastic from going to landfills.

Also, the resorts are now using pens made of 74 percent recycled material. The Marriott Vacation Club buys more than a million and half pens each year. That's about 9 tons of pens. Marriott International announced its phase-out of plastic keys and other efforts to use more environmentally friendly supplies at its properties last year.

Al Gore to Headline at Greenbuild Conference

Nobel Laureate and former Vice President Al Gore will be the keynote speaker at the opening ceremony of the U.S. Green Building Council's International Conference and Expo, which is being held this year in Phoenix, Ariz.

The curtain-raiser for the conference that runs November 11 to 13 is being held at Chase Field, the Arizona Diamondbacks' ballpark. The opening ceremony will also feature a performance by nine-time Grammy winner and environmental advocate Sheryl Crow. More information on the conference this year is available at

Scotts Miracle-Gro Taps Nature to Green Grass

Scotts Miracle-Gro Co. is working on a formulation for a naturally sourced herbicide, Canadian Bioherbicide, that can rid a lawn of clover, dandelions and other pesky broadleaf weeds, according to the Wall Street Journal. The product, which is made from Canadian thistle fungus and could be available in the U.S. as early as 2011, is part of the company's efforts to integrate more natural products in its lawn and garden care offerings.

Image CC licensed by FANG Chen.