Have you ever heard someone say, “Ugh! Austin is the worst.” My guess is that you probably haven’t. After spending my first weekend there earlier this summer, even in the unrelenting, I-can’t-breathe-and-also-I-might-be-dying heat, my experience in Austin was just plain awesome.
So why the sudden ATX lovefest?
Today, the ecoATM team will be exhibiting at SXSWeco, joining a global community of thought-leaders in the sustainable solutions world focusing on technology, the environment and doing good. It’s through this participation that I found another reason to love Austin - it’s one of the greenest cities in the country, and a really exciting place to be for environmental leaders, enthusiasts and businesses. Let’s review some of the city’s most notable accomplishments:
1. In 2007, Austin passed the Climate Protection Plan and pledged that all facilities, fleets and operations in the city would become 100 percent carbon neutral by 2020. This means that they will all be powered solely by using clean energy, which will prevent any carbon dioxide from releasing into the atmosphere. This year, the city took this plan a step further by setting a goal of having the entire city become carbon neutral by 2050.
2. Fifteen percent of Austin is green space: 206 parks, 26 greenbelts and more than 50 miles of trails. Green space in an urban setting has many benefits, including pollutant absorption and providing a habitat for a variety of wildlife.
3. Dozens of green start-ups, like HelioVolt, call Austin home; start-ups provide employment for 15,000 residents.
4. Austin has more 100%-green powered businesses than any other city in the country. Consumers and businesses can receive handsome rebates for installing energy-efficient appliances.
5. The city has it’s own mobile app call Rethink, created to motivate residents and visitors to practice “greener behaviors that protect and preserve what’s best about Austin.” Users can earn pins and badges in 10 different categories, and the app claims that by using its environmentally-kind tips, people can save $200 a year.
6. By 2017, the Universal Recycling Ordinance will require all commercial properties to provide their tenants and employees access to proper recycling services for a minimum of five materials. These properties include office buildings, retail, medical, manufacturing and warehouse facilities, in addition to multi-family apartments and condominiums. This effort is in line with the city’s overall goal of being zero-waste by 2040 or sooner. Click the video image above for more information.
7. In March 2013, Austin banned paper and plastic single-use bags at all retailers within the city limits. Officials calculated that Austinites were using 263 million plastic bags each year.
Do you see why we’re excited? For team ecoATM, being in Austin and at SXSWeco will give us the opportunity to chat with attendees about our recent environmental milestones. Outerwall, our parent company, recently made a commitment at the Clinton Global Initiative to collect two million pounds of e-waste through ecoATM kiosks over the next three years. We’re also proud to say that we just passed the three million recycled devices mark.
If you are attending SXSWeco this year, come visit us for a chat and a demo of the kiosk at booth #122. And if you’re not attending? Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for event updates. Oh, and make sure you put Austin on your travel bucket list.
I will soon be the owner of an iPhone 6, but the only thing that scares me about this as a gamer is making sure my games and the progress I have made in them will be able to move with me to the new device. I didn’t spend a billion hours playing Angry Birds, Clash of Clans and Pet Rescue to have it all go away. That isn’t even talking about the money for in-game purchases!
To ease my anxieties, here’s a list of games that can be moved to the iPhone 6 (I also sadly found one game that I won’t be able to transfer, Hungry Shark Evolution). It is important to note that pretty much every single game will require you to tie your progress to a Facebook account or the iOS Game Center account.
Games That Can Be Moved to the iPhone 6
Click on each link to get step-by-step instructions
1. Angry Birds
2. Candy Crush
4. Pet Rescue
Any games we missed on this list?