May 9, 2014 - College campuses are becoming a hotspot in the battle against climate change. Activists at around 300 schools are pressuring the institutions to divest their holdings in oil, natural gas and coal companies -- the fossil fuels that scientists blame for carbon-induced global warming.
The movement, which started in 2012, is targeting the top 200 companies in the sector. It gained traction earlier this week when Stanford University announced that it would "no longer make direct investments in coal mining companies" because of the harm it causes the environment. About 37 percent of the electricity generated in the U.S. comes from coal. read more>>>
4 May 2014 - Kazakhstan proposes to strengthen the cooperation in the spheres of "green economy", energy saving and alternative energy under the SPECA program (the United Nations Special Program for the Economies of Central Asia), the country's Minister of Economy and Budget Planning, Erbolat Dossayev said.
The minister made the remarks during his meeting with the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), Shamshad Akhtar.
During the meeting, Dossayev pointed out that throughout twenty years Kazakhstan have been committed to the goals and tasks of the UN, including ESCAP, which is the most dignified inter-governmental forum of all the regional commissions. read more>>>
1. What are the benefits of integrating renewable energy with microgrids?
The obvious first benefit is related to cost of generation reduction. With the increasing costs of traditional fossil fuel based generation, such as diesel, and the reduction in dollar-per-watt cost for renewables such as wind, the tipping point for renewables in remote microgrids has been passed. For remote and islanded areas such as Alaska, Northern Canada and the Caribbean, which have excellent wind and solar resources, it’s a no brainer. A secondary benefit, and some would argue just as important, is the avoided environmental impact due to transport and storage of fossil fuels in these remote pristine areas.
2. Do microgrids increase the reliability of the grid? read more>>>
May 3, 2014 - With the first ever production of synthesized "solar" jet fuel, the EU-funded SOLAR-JET project has successfully demonstrated the entire production chain for renewable kerosene obtained directly from sunlight, water and carbon dioxide (CO2), therein potentially revolutionizing the future of aviation. This process has also the potential to produce any other type of fuel for transport applications, such as diesel, gasoline or pure hydrogen in a more sustainable way.
Several notable research organizations from academia through to industry (ETH Zürich, Bauhaus Luftfahrt, Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR), ARTTIC and Shell Global Solutions) have explored a thermochemical pathway driven by concentrated solar energy. read more>>>
May 2, 2014 - Peru will be one of the first countries in the world to adopt the initiative Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE), the Andean nation’s Labor and Employment Promotion Ministry announced on Tuesday.
The head of the sector, Ana Jara, said PAGE seeks to contribute to the transformation of national economic structures in developing countries with the aim to achieve environmental sustainability, create decent jobs, reduce poverty, and improve human well-being.
The Environment Minister Manuel Pulgar- Vidal, and Minister Jara signed yesterday the Lima Declaration formalizing the launch of the initiative PAGE in Peru. read more>>>
To meet the demands of the growing green economy, a lot more eco entrepreneurs are doing to be needed, building products and services that support and enable sustainability, not only on a large scale, but also, and perhaps especially, for the individual and their home.
We’re seeing a rising trend of interest in people who want to learn how to be more self-sufficient, to save money and water and other resources with everyday activities, as well as a desire to lower their carbon footprint and to enter into new relationships with their food sources and local economy. read more>>>
One of the beauties of solar power: it really doesn’t require a lot of sun to create power. So, sure, places like Arizona and Abu Dhabi can creates massive amounts of electricity with the sun… but the UK – not known for its sunny days – can also power homes and businesses with solar panels. The Power Your Future program is taking advantage of what sunlight there is in Great Britain to create “solar schools,” and has already installed 100 solar arrays that will create cost savings and educational opportunities for these institutions.
Isn’t that expensive? Well, yes… and not every school will be able to pay for a solar power system up front. So, the program has partnered with Australia-based CBD Energy to fund new arrays at 22 schools across the UK. The company created bond offerings to raise money for the program, and brought in over £7.5 million (or $12.65 million American). With that money, they’ll be able to generate 3,300,000 MWh of electricity, and prevent emissions of over 1,720 tons of CO2 every year. read more>>>
05/04/14 - A Maryland-based energy company plans to build a gigantic tower that could tap solar and wind resources to generate 500 megawatts of energy. The Solar Wind Energy Tower is planned for a location on the Arizona-Mexico border, and it could be the second-tallest structure in the United States. The company plans to start construction by 2018.
The tower is likely to be located at a 600 acre site near the Mexican border and would take advantage of the arid climate – temperatures in the area regular reach 106 degrees. The huge concrete structure would use sunlight to heat the top of the tower and spray cool mist over the 1,200 foot wide diameter. Water evaporates and the cool air drops to the bottom at speeds of up to 50 miles per hour. This current pushes the air through a circle of wind turbines that produce energy. read more>>>
May 2, 2014 - The first computer model that can simulate how all living creatures interact on a global or local scale has been released by Microsoft and the UN Environment Programme to help scientists and policy makers answer crucial environmental questions.
Microsoft’s Computational Science Lab and United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre, based in Cambridge, have created this simulation of life on Earth, following a set of basic ecological tools found in the real world.
The open source technology allows scientists, for the first time, to simulate how all organisms on earth interact in a changing environment. read more>>>
April 29, 2014 - On Monday, the last day of his weeklong trip to Asia, President Barack Obama inspected a new U.S.-made electric minibus that will replace some of the city’s diesel jeepneys – vehicles that make Manila traffic so polluting and chaotic.
Pangea Motors based in Vancouver, Washington manufactures the 16-passenger electric minibuses. Each minibus is called a Comet, which stands for City Optimized Managed Electric Transport.
In conjunction with its Filipino partner company Global Electric Transportation (GET), Pangea is deploying zero-emission Comets in Manila, in an effort to reduce the pollution emitted by the city’s fleet of 50,000 jeepneys. read more>>>