Shifting rivers in India’s largest tea producing state and abnormally high rainfall this year is destroying hundreds of acres of tea gardens and could cut output in the world’s second-largest tea grower. More than a tenth of the 18,000 hectares of plantations, or tea gardens, in India’s northeast state of Assam could be washed away as the mighty Himalaya-born Brahmaputra and other smaller rivers flood the region where century-old operations grow over half of India’s tea. “Some tea gardens have already fallen into rivers and some of them are on the verge of disappearing,” said Dipanjol Deka, secretary general of Tea Association of India (TAI) in Guwahati, the main city in the region.
Green building is one of the keys to economic recovery. Not only is it a better way to do business, it drives innovation, improves efficiency standards, makes for happier and healthier people and creates new “green collar” jobs. The trend topics on this list will be no surprise to others who are experts in this area; they are products, systems and concepts that have been quietly percolating. The purpose of this list is to identify those “big picture” trends that we see becoming more mainstream in 2010.