Sustainability Reads: February 2- February 8

Coral reefs are in such bad shape that scientists may have to speed up their evolution
Coral reefs are in trouble. And things will only get worse with climate change as warmer water equals bleaching and acidification makes it difficult for coral to form. According to this article and accompanying paper, coral reefs are threatened to the extent that scientists may need to deploy genetic alteration or “assisted evolution” to ensure coral’s survival. For example, scientists could grow microbes that are more resistant to warm temperatures and introduce them into struggling wild coral. It’s sad that it may come to this and kind of freaky, but we’ll keep you posted. Article by Chris Mooney on Washington Post, research published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

USGBC Releases the Top 10 States for LEED Green Building per Capita
More than 26,600 projects representing 3.6 billion square feet of space have been LEED-certified to date, with another 42,000 projects representing 8.8 billion square feet in the pipeline for certification. Here are this year’s top 10 states for the number of LEED certified buildings per capita:

1) Illinois 2) Colorado 3) Maryland 4) Virginia 5) Massachusetts 6) Hawaii 7) California 8) Georgia 9) Minnesota 10) Arizona and New York (tied).

11 Sustainable U.S. Wineries
This is a great little piece highlighting the sustainable practices that wineries have taken up. Of course there are small-scale wineries and others that didn’t make the list, but it’s interesting to see what we can begin to expect from the industry. Some wineries are going organic, tracking and reducing their waste to landfills, and employing innovative water use reduction strategies. Other wineries are planting local crops like walnut, hazelnut and fruit trees or leaving open space and native grasses to enhance biodiversity. Buildings are becoming LEED certified and installing solar panels. And at least one installed a geothermal system. Check out the link for names of these wines to try. By Mary Mazzoni on Triple Pundit.

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