From the past to the Present: Part Two

In my post From the Past to the Present: Part One i talked about the first half of our journey starting from Chino Farms up to when we visited Colonial WiIliamsburg. However after Williamsburg we went up to Annapolis MD.

During the two days in Annapolis we walked around the present day town, we saw the flags that support the Naval base and and the shops that sell the Maryland flag gear. But during this time, even with the new shops that take over the buildings every where you step you are stepping back in history. it could be if you are walking on the brick roads or looking at the historic buildings that surround you with every step that you take on those roads.

The second day that we were in Annapolis we took a walking tour. However this was not a tour given by one of the companies that give tours, it was given by Jane Cox who works for historic Annapolis she gave us a tour of many old buildings that make up the town. Due to these tours I have realized how important architecture is to history.

This past week while back at the normal classes we walked around Chestertown in order to look at the historic architecture that is around us. The houses that we saw were able to take us on a trip into he past just by looking at buildings. We saw many different style houses from Georgian style which dates back to the 1700’s even up to houses that are more commonly exist today. However one style that we did not see while walking around, were houses that were built during the time that Greek revival was popular during 1825-1860. these houses not being present in the town suggest that people were not making enough money in order to build houses or building in the town at that time.

The example of houses not being in the town is just one example of the way that architecture can show what the past was like even withing the present.

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A Dulled Truth

No matter how anyone was taught or where they were taught wishing someone time in school they will have to pick up a history book and study it for one of their classes. They can be in 5th grade or even 12th grade when they finally study history but no matter when they will do it. However after finishing the first journey for Chesapeake semester I have come to realize that many ways that history is taught, no matter if it is a book a movie or even live action, it has been dulled down a substantial amount. Not to say that the high school history book are wrong they a just not as detailed when it comes to the more graphic forms of history I.E. Slavery or the way that Native Americans were treated when the colonist first arrived.
My coming to this realization started before we even got down to our first destination for this journey, the colony of Jamestown. While driving down there, and a little after we arrived, we were discussing how there were actually two Jamestown’s, there was the one that we were heading to (which was where the actual fort was when it was first constructed) and there was one down the road from there that was a rebuilt version of the town that consisted of actors playing the roles of people who may have lived there back when it was a colony. After talking to Danny Schmidt, one of the archeologist at the dig site in the real Jamestown, it was easy to tell that if someone was to take a trip to the rebuilt Jamestown they would not be able to get the full sense of hard of a struggle that it was to live in the colony. While the rebuilt Jamestown gave an accurate representation of part of the life there, the stories about the men eating belts just to survive or the fact that a young women after she had passed had been butchered and eaten just to feed enough people for a little time. These sad but true stories are the kind you will here when you ask a historian about life during the time period not from reading a history book. While Jamestown is one of the places that this is a factor they are not the only place.
After we left Jamestown we went to Colonial Williamsburg for two days. While those two days that we had been there were packed full of knowledge it still seemed like something was missing and when we sat down to discuss after the second night I realized what it was. After talking for a while the group as a whole came to the consensus that during our days there the mention of slavery of not present for most of the talks that were given by the interpreters that worked there. While packed full of knowledge if someone was to ask an interpreter about slavery in the time period they would do their best to dodge the question and figure out something new to say. This could be happening for many reasons it could be that they just do not know the answer to the question or maybe the company tries to stay away from the darker side of history in order to keep the people that come there coming. If they talk about the harshness of slavery to a little child and that child’s parents do not like it that company not only loses that business abut could possibly have a lawsuit on their hands. No matter what the reason as to why this is happening it is still happening at places like this and in many aspects of society today. These aspects are not just related to the live action towns but they are everywhere, in history books, in movies, T.V. shows, magazines, and many more information means that we see in today’s world.
No matter what the reason is or where it is happening, many time when people study history they do not get the full extent of what they are trying to learn. It could be because people do not want to hear it or maybe it is a business move but no matter the reason, it happens and if people would like to learn the true history of our nation it is time to do some research on their own.

BMW

One of the most well-known companies in the world is the car company BMW. What many people do not know however is BMW that BMW is one of the most sustainable companies in the world. The biggest way that they do that is product responsibility (BMW Group, 2013).

BMW strives to make the most sustainable vehicles possible, a car that is a example of this is the BMW i3 due to the electricity mix that is made up of renewable energies, its greenhouse gas potential is more than 50% lower than a convention car (BMW Group, 2013). This car is a great example of what many auto companies aspire to do with their products, the only difference is that BMW has the ability to do it and they try their best to do it also. Other than just that car BMW relies on innovative technologies in order to optimize the energy profile of their entire fleet of their vehicles (BMW Group, 2013). A big thing that BMW2becomes a problem when people make items green they think that the price is going to go up substantially. BMW however, has the ability to make their items green and still make sure that they still have the ability to make their products to the price range of the average person who is trying to buy a car.

Through the way that the company makes their product and the way that they sell their products BMW is a leader in sustainable business and because of this they are leaders in industry and many companies should follow their lead and be greener.

Work Cited:

“BMW Group : Sustainable Value Report 2013 : Product Responsibility.” BMW Group : Sustainable Value Report 2013 : Product Responsibility. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Apr. 2015.

Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons is a company much like 7-11 and Royal Farms, the reason that most people in the United States have not heard of the company is because it is normally found in Canada. The company hoverer has been known for being a very tim hortonssustainability company. One thing that the company is very proud of is their buildings. For every branch of the company that they can they try and build the building to LEED certification (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014). In 2014 they were able to complete four out of 200 existing LEED projects, progress with one of them even being rated as LEED silver (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014).

After, the restorations took place the measures contributed to an annual energy savings of 18,133 kWh for each standard 2,500 square-foot restaurant (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014). Do to the savings that the buildings that the company put in on December 31, 2014 the company was able to save approximately four million kWh those savings are enough to power 420 homes for one year (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014). When building more sustainable buildings there are three key criteria that the company uses. The first criteria that they use is making sure that it is cost effective (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014). If the cost of the building is higher than the yield then they will not build it (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014). The second criteria that they use is making sure that it is repeatable (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014). If the building that they are building cannot change with the new technology then they would not build it (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014). The lasttim hortons 2 criteria that they use is making sure that it will work (Tim Hortons Sustainability and responsibility report, 2014). I they put a lot of time and money into a building they have to make sure that the technology and the actual building will be able to be used.

While their buildings are something that the company focuses a lot on in order to make themselves more sustainable they still do a lot including the way that they package their material, the way that they treat their offices and many other ways. Tim Hortons is a very sustainable company that does their best to keep the world a place where we can live on for the longest time possible.

Works Cited:

“OUR INITIATIVES: ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP View Our Performance.” 2014 Tim Hortons Sustainability and Responsibility Report. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Apr. 2015.

Outotec

In Jessup Maryland right by Washington blvd is a company named Outotec. It is a company that works with natural gases in order to provide energy to the people in the area. It also has the privilege of being on the Forbesoutotec1 list of top 10 most sustainable companies of 2014. In the sustainability report that they put out a big area that they focus on is reducing the carbon footprint of their supply chain.

In 2014 the company analyzed the carbon footprint of their supply chain in terms of greenhouse gas emissions (maximizing our handprint, 2014).  They figured out the footprint based on money spent by the company and using the supply chain emission factors as defined by the department for environment (maximizing our handprint, 2014).  After the test were all complete and the footprint was figured out it showed that the supply chain footprint in 2014 was 386,000 tonnes of CO2 which is super lower than their 2013 footprint which was 623,000 tonnes of CO2 (maximizing our handprint, 2014).  While the company did a greatoutotec2 job of lowering their footprint from the year before the operations footprint for the same year was at 34,787 tonnes of CO2 (maximizing our handprint, 2014) which is much lower the supply chain.

While the supply chain has more that goes into it and creates more chances for the footprint to grow, the company has done a great job at lowering it this far and they are still developing was to lower it even more.

Works cited:

Outotec, About. “Maximizing Our Handprint.” Maximizing Our Handprint (n.d.): n. pag. 2014. Web. 29 Apr. 2015.

Forbes. Forbes Magazine, n.d. Web. 29 Apr. 2015.

Adidas

The third company that I will discuss in my blog series is the German sportswear company Adidas.  In January of 2015 Adidas took third place on the top 100 most sustainable companies in the world (environmental leader, 2015). While itadidas is not available for the 2015 year yet at the end of 2014 Adidas put out a sustainability progress report which was separated into four categories. They are people, product, planet, and partnership. Each of these categories have other subcategories within them, each of these categories and subcategories have a very important part in the way that Adidas grows, and remains sustainable.

The first category, people, deals mainly with the other companies that Adidas deals with. Each company that Adidas works with they strive to make greener, this includes having at least 60% of all direct suppliers and 80% of strategic suppliers to achieve a “good” (3C) score or better (Adidas Group Corporate Communication, 2014). They also make sure that 25 % of their strategic suppliers to be in a self- governance compliance model (4C or better) (Adidas Group Corporate Communication, 2014). Every year the company audits their partners on their ability to develop fair, healthy, and environmentally sound work place conditions when they do this they give them ratings including 3C and 4C. The goal of this is to get every company that they work with to be as environmentally friendly as they can be. The second category is product, the company has many different goals for the way that their products are made and shipped. This includes using 40% better cotton by the end of 2015 and using 100% sustainable cotton by 2018 (Adidas Group Corporate Communication, 2014). They want to make sure that all of their products are used with more sustainable materials in general (Adidas Group Corporate Communication, 2014). They also want to do their best to optimize all of the packaging solutions (Adidas Group Corporate Communication, 2014). The third category that they use is planet. In this category there are two main goals the first one is having their own green company initiative targets which is just by their own operations in general and to reduce the environmental footprint of their I.T. shoesinfrastructure by 20% (Adidas Group Corporate Communication, 2014). When these goals are achieved and it seems like they will be soon then the company is going to be doing a great part in helping to leave the earth better ten they found it. The last section of their plan is partnerships the section of partnership helps keep them green because they make partnerships and maintain strong relationships within the sustainability area (Adidas Group Corporate Communication, 2014). Doing this gives the company the ability to do many different green activities.

No matter what category that you are looking at it is easy to tell that Adidas has the world in mind when making their product. They are a company that others should look up to and strive to be like them.

Works cited:

“World’s 100 Most Sustainable Companies Ranked.” Environmental Leader RSS. N.p., 22 Jan. 2015. Web. 28 Apr. 2015.

Team, Adidas Group Corporate Communication. “Sustainability Progress Report 2014.” MAKE A (n.d.): n. pag. 2014. Web. 28 Apr. 2015.

Solar Roadways

In this post I am going to talk about a very heavily debated topic, solar roadways. Solar roadways were first invented by Parking lot eastScott and Julie Brusaw in their garage at home, and in 2009 the Department of Transportation gave them a 100,000 dollar grant, this grant was given in order to gather information from engineering experts from many fields, and for those experts to develop a paper on the concept itself. However Scott being an electrical engineer, said that he did not need 100,000 dollars to ask people to write a paper, so he asked the DOT if he could just build a prototype. With that the first solar roadway panel was created (Lacey).

                After this first prototype was created the Brusaw’s got more funding in order to help build the product. Since then they have put solar roadway panels on their drive way and have done many test in order to prove their product in strength, durability and many other situations. While solar roadways are not yet open for public use, the panels that the Brusaw’s driveway have shown promise  in their ability to achieve the goals that the couple set out to accomplish when they first created the idea.

Many years ago when global warming became a very popular subject to talk about, the Brusaw’s came up with LEDs - whitethe idea of trying to replace asphalt and concrete surfaces with solar panels that could be driven and walked on. These solar roads that they were thinking of could pay for themselves with the amount of energy that they created. After the original idea came to them, they kept adding on to it with ideas like what if they had LED lights on them in order to be able to light the ways on the roads during the day and the night, and other ideas like putting a heating element in them in order to prevent snow and ice accumulation in northern areas. Ideas like this and many more are just part of the original plan that the Brusaw’s had. Now the panels on the driveway are able to create energy, light up, take pressure and even melt the snow when it falls.Snow_test

While there are working prototypes there are still many people who do not believe that solar roadways are a possibility. Eric Weaver a research engineer at the FHA said “I’d say it’s not very realistic to cover the entire highway systems with these panels.” (Lacey) however he quickly followed up that line with saying “if you don’t reach for new something, you’ll never get there. Just the effort of doing something new creates byproducts.”(Lacey). To this day the Brusaws are still trying to make the next best energy source for the whole world to use.

If you want to learn more about solar roadways here is a video of the TED talk that Scott gave about solar roadways.

http://youtu.be/nvWTaqUvsfA

Works Cited:

Lacey, Stephen. “Would Solar Roadways Work? A Government Engineer Discusses the Controversial Technology.” Greentechmedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Apr. 2015.

“Introduction.” Solar Roadways. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Apr. 2015.