December 10, 2008
There have been those who think electric cars will never work.
There are those who think electric cars are a good idea, but batteries aren't the right storage solution.
There are those who think that electric cars and batteries are reasonable solutions, but that we'll run out of lithium long before we run out of oil.
There are those who think hydrogen cars are the answer and there are those who think hydrogen cars are pure lunacy.
I will plan to discuss some of those comments a little later, but for today I encourage you to read Thomas Friedman's op-ed piece While Detroit Slept in today's (Dec 10th) New York Times.
He believes that investing in Detroit's current business model will be just like
"... pouring billions of dollars into improving typewriters on the eve of the birth of the PC and the Internet."
" ... pouring billions of dollars into the CD music business on the eve of the birth of the iPod and iTunes."
His conclusion -
"If we miss the chance to win the race for Car 2.0 because we keep mindlessly bailing out Car 1.0, there will be no one to blame more than Detroit’s new shareholders: we the taxpayers."
He also believes that Shai Agassi's company has the right business model.
"It is Shai Agassi’s electric car network company, called Better Place. Just last week, the company, based in Palo Alto, Calif., announced a partnership with the state of Hawaii to road test its business plan there after already inking similar deals with Israel, Australia, the San Francisco Bay area and, yes, Denmark."
December 7, 2008
Among the Bush administration's final environmental legacies will be a decision to exempt perchlorate, a known toxin found at unsafe levels in the drinking water of millions of Americans, from federal regulation.
The ruling, proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency in October, was supposed to be formalized on Monday. That deadline passed, but the agency expects to announce its decision by the year's end, before president-elect Barack Obama takes office. It could take years to reverse.
George Bush is working at a breakneck pace to dismantle at least 10 major environmental safeguards protecting America's wildlife, national parks and rivers before he leaves office in January.
With barely 60 days to go until Bush hands over to Barack Obama, his White House is working methodically to weaken or reverse an array of regulations that protect America's wilderness from logging or mining operations, and compel factory farms to clean up dangerous waste.
In the latest such move this week, Bush opened up some 800,000 hectares (2m acres) of land in Rocky Mountain states for the development of oil shale, one of the dirtiest fuels on the planet. The law goes into effect on January 17, three days before Obama takes office.
The timing is crucial. Most regulations take effect 60 days after publication, and Bush wants the new rules in place before he leaves the White House on January 20. That will make it more difficult for Obama to undo them.
December 6, 2008
I am not in favor of providing a bridge loan to nowhere for the Big Three automakers. Please do not approve a bailout as currently proposed by the Big Three.
If we are going to provide the Big Three with a loan, it should be with the understanding that the Big Three will agree to use the money to build the kind of cars our nation needs to break our dependence on foreign oil.
If you want an example of how we can do that quickly and relatively cheaply, please read this article.
I haven't read anything that gives me more hope for our future in a long time. I went to hear Shai Agassi speak at Harvard University on Thursday night. He has a brilliant plan for solving this current crisis.
With no long term sustainable plan from Detroit, a bailout of $34 billion will be good money after bad and Detroit will be back asking the taxpayers for more before the end of 2009.
With a long term and sustainable plan like Shai Agassi's we can once again be proud of our nation and our auto industry.
November 24, 2008
Severn Suzuki, a twelve year old addresses the Earth Summit in 1992 speaking for children and all future generations.
This is an incredibly powerful declaration of the moral issues driving the importance of creating a sustainable future.
She asks the question – “Are we even on your list of priorities?”
Please ask yourself what is it you are willing to commit, what action are you willing to take to respond to her call?
November 13, 2008
September 17, 2008
At first, the city seeks to raise $1.5 million for a pilot program for about 50 homes. If it program is successful, the kitty could eventually contain tens of millions of dollars, and hundreds of property owners could be eligible to participate.
The program, said Daniel M. Kammen, a professor of energy at the University of California at Berkeley and director of the school’s Institute of the Environment, is designed to entice people who might be scared away by the high initial cost of retrofitting homes to incorporate solar power or become more energy efficient.
It allows homeowners “to think about creating clean-energy homes with basically no cost” up front, he added.
Participating homeowners would pay roughly $180 more per month on their property tax bills, though much of that cost could be expected to be recouped in savings on electrical bills.
June 8, 2008
Toyota upped the size of the storage tank from 148 to 156 liters and doubled the storage pressure to 70 MPa (about 10,000 PSI). It also increased fuel efficiency by 25 percent through improved fuel cell performance, enhanced regenerative braking and cutting the amount of energy required to drive the accessory systems. The fuel cell also will operate at temperatures as low as 22 degrees Fahrenheit below zero.
Wired reports that several major automakers are aggressively developing hydrogen vehicles. BMW is putting its Hydrogen 7 in the hands of Hollywood celebrities, General Motors promise to roll out the Equinox Cell Vehicle later this year and Hyundai says it will produce hydrogen cars by 2012.
June 1, 2008
The report is interesting from a number of perspectives.
They have cut their estimates of the amount of oil available by more than 50% from the previous estimates they released in 1998.
"Between 2018 and 2030, cumulative additional oil production is 2.6 billion barrels for the mean oil resource case, while the low and high resource cases project a cumulative additional oil production of 1.9 and 4.3 billion barrels, respectively."
The 1998 report projected 5.7 billion barrels of production from ANWR for the mean oil case. The trend suggests that the more we know about ANWR, the more we lower the initial very rosy estimates for the amount of production.
The most recent report includes projections on the impact that ANWR will have on the price of oil.
This means that when ANWR hits peak production in 2026 (if drilling was approved this year) the impact on the price of oil at that time will be less than half of one percent.
Bottom line, you will never notice the difference in the price of oil.
We would be much better off taking the same investment dollars and using them to create new renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind and fuel cell technologies.
We would be much better off taking the same investment dollars and finding ways to make our cars more efficient.
The oil from ANWR will be depleted in 30 years. Investments in wind and solar will still be generating energy for many, many years after the last drop of oil in ANWR is gone.
May 31, 2008
Demand in the Middle East is a major factor right now, said Adam Robinson, an oil analyst at Lehman Brothers in New York. Mr. Robinson predicts the region will constitute more than 40% of increased demand next year.
Saudi Arabia in particular has become a major energy consumer as the country pushes to put its oil riches to greater use. The kingdom is in the middle of a major investment campaign to become a world player in petrochemicals, aluminum and fertilizers, all of which will require huge amounts of oil and natural gas.
Since 2004, Saudi oil consumption has increased nearly 23%, to 2.3 million barrels a day last year. Jeffrey Brown, a Dallas-based petroleum geologist who studies net export numbers, said that at its current growth rate, Saudi Arabia could be consuming 4.6 million barrels a day by 2020.
That would cut significantly into Saudi exports even as the world looks to its largest oil supplier to help manage rising demand. Saudi Arabia has nearly a quarter of the world's proven reserves and supplies around 12% of the 86 million barrels a day that the world now consumes."
May 25, 2008
Getting ordinary plastic bags to rot away like banana peels would be an environmental dream come true. After all, we produce 500 billion a year worldwide and they take up to 1,000 years to decompose. They take up space in landfills, litter our streets and parks, pollute the oceans and kill the animals that eat them.
Daniel Burd's project won the top prize at the Canada-Wide Science Fair in Ottawa. He came back with a long list of awards, including a $10,000 prize, a $20,000 scholarship, and recognition that he has found a practical way to help the environment.
He found strains one and two together produced a 32 per cent weight loss in his plastic strips. His theory is strain one helps strain two reproduce. Tests to identify the strains found strain two was Sphingomonas bacteria and the helper was Pseudomonas.
A researcher in Ireland has found Pseudomonas is capable of degrading polystyrene, but as far as Burd and his teacher Mark Menhennet know -- and they've looked -- Burd's research on polyethelene plastic bags is a first.
May 13, 2008
Reserves must not be ruled by politicians, says Roberts. 'The model of industry-political control for regulatory bodies just doesn't work. It's like central banks - put them under politicians' control and they make dangerous, short-term decisions that result in economic instability. Put them under independent control, and they make better-judged, more strategic decisions.'
The Newfoundland cod fishery, for 500 years the world's greatest, was exhausted and closed in 1992, and there's still no evidence of any return of the fish. Once stocks dip below a certain critical level, the scientists believe, they can never recover because the entire eco-system has changed. The question is whether, after 50 years of vacillation and denial, there's any prospect of the politicians acting decisively now. 'It is awful and we are on the road to disaster,' says Tudela. 'But the collapse - in some, not all the situations - is still reversible. And it's worth trying.'
May 12, 2008
May 9, 2008
MIT student project aims to develop cost-efficient solar power
A team of students, led by mechanical engineering graduate student Spencer Ahrens, has spent the last few months assembling a prototype for a concentrating solar power system they think could revolutionize the field. It's a 12-foot-square mirrored dish capable of concentrating sunlight by a factor of 1,000, built from simple, inexpensive industrial materials selected for price, durability and ease of assembly rather than for optimum performance.
Rather than aiming for a smooth parabolic surface that would bring the sunlight to a perfect focus, the dish is being made with 10-inch-wide by 12-foot-long strips of relatively low-cost, lightweight bathroom-type mirror glass. The frame is assembled from cheap aluminum tubing, with holes drilled in precise locations using a simple jig for alignment, so that the struts can be assembled into a framework that passively snaps into just the right parabolic curvature.
The control mechanism, which allows the dish to track the sun automatically across the sky, is also remarkably simple--photocells mounted on each side of the dish with opaque baffles, which cast a shadow on the cell when it drifts out of alignment, connect to a simple circuit that turns on small electric motors to push the dish back into the right position.
"The technical challenge here is to make it simple," Ahrens explains.
May 1, 2008
Well, here are a couple articles that let you know what is possible for fuel efficiency. As you may remember the US government has recently set a goal of achieving 35 mpg by 2020. The EU requirements for new passenger car fuel efficiency by 2012 are 47 mpg.
How about a four-seater with 110 mile range and top speed of 65 mph, priced under $25,000, made from 95% recyclable materials, and available in the U.S. in 2009.
And for those of you with a hankering for a sports car that is in production today, here's the prettiest car all electric car I've ever seen and it has incredible numbers. 0 - 60 mph in under 4 seconds. 135 mpg. 2 cents a mile. 220 miles per charge. Did I say it is the prettiest thing you've ever seen? Make sure you click on this one!
Of course if you are going to be environmentally friendly, you better sign up for the Green Power option from your electric utility before you charge your electic vehicle!!
Finally here is a 2 minute video from PBS and RMI. The quote that sticks with me is that barely 1% of the energy in a gallon of gasoline actually moves the driver in a forward direction. 7/8's of the fuel energy never even makes it to the wheels!!!
It would seem that my friend is right. We can do better!
April 29, 2008
One of the effects of the global temperature rise is that the winter temperatures are no longer cold enough to kill mountain pine beetles in British Columbia. The warmer weather in the summer provides better conditions for the beetle as well. The result is that the mountain pine beetles are killing huge numbers of trees in the British Columbia forests.
Natural Resources Canada
(Red means dead in pine forests.) The dead trees release the carbon that they have captured throughout their lives making the British Columbia forests a net carbon producer until at least 2020. The pine beetle blight is now affecting 32 million acres, at least an order magnitude larger area than any previous recorded infestation. The result will be an average release of 13 million metric tons of CO2 each year between the year 2000 and 2020.
To put this in context, the amount of carbon released from this section of British Columbia is about 75% of all the carbon released from all Canadian forest fires.
As more carbon is released, the earth's temperature rises and allowing the pine beetle to expand into larger areas of the forest. Positive Feedback Loop.
The NY Times wrote about this in an article titled "The Beetle Factor in a Carbon Calculus"
April 16, 2008
April 5, 2008
My son's science teacher required every student in the class to conduct an energy audit of their house. I was stunned to find out that our refrigerator was the largest consumer of electricity in our house - by far.
It was consuming about 4,730 kilowatt hours of electricity a year. That’s about the same as leaving 5 - 100 watt light bulbs on all day, every day of the year.
I replaced the refrigerator with a new Energy Star refrigerator.
The new refrigerator uses about 80% less electricity than the old refrigerator. (That's not a typo!)
April 3, 2008
Wrong, says a U.S. study released on March 27, 2008 that shows one household ditching paper statements for Web transactions would save 24 square feet of forest a year.
By switching to electronic bills, statements and payments, the average American household would save 6.6 pounds of paper a year, save 0.08 trees, and not produce 171 pounds of greenhouse gases -- the equivalent of driving 169 miles.
The survey, whose results were vetted by the Environmental Protection Agency, said it would also mean avoiding the deforestation of 24 square feet of forest, the release of 63 gallons of wastewater into the environment, and save 4.5 gallons of gasoline used for mailing.
"Individuals who think they are only one person and can't really have an impact should re-evaluate their position. Even small contributions can have a impact when aggregated," said Craig Vaream, a member of the PayItGreen Alliance and JPMorgan Chase.
Composed of 436 frames taken between May and September of 2007, it shows the glacier rapidly retreating by about half a mile (1.6 kilometers), a volume loss of some 0.4 cubic miles (1.67 cubic kilometers) of ice or 400 billion gallons (1.5 trillion liters) of water.
The time-lapse was taken as part of the ongoing Extreme Ice Survey (EIS), an ambitious project to capture global warming-induced glacial retreat in the act. Beginning in December 2006, photographer James Balog and his colleagues set up 26 solar-powered cameras at glaciers in Greenland, Iceland, Alaska, the Alps, and the Rocky Mountains. Each unit will take a photograph every daylight hour until fall 2009.
In 2008, Balog's team began to return to each of the camera sites to collect images. In the end, they will have more than 300,000 images to analyze and stitch together to produce more dramatic videos like this one.
This kind of multiyear effort, says Balog, is necessary to "radically alter public perception of the global warming issue."
March 20, 2008
A poor progress report on efforts to rein in greenhouse gases:
"... that even under the most unfavorable assumptions regarding costs, the U.S. economy is predicted to continue growing robustly as carbon emissions are reduced,” said Repetto. “Under favorable assumptions, the economy would grow more rapidly if emissions are reduced through national policy measures than if they are allowed to increase as in the past.”
And they've created a website where you can see that for yourself!
“As Congress prepares to debate new legislation to address the threat of climate change, opponents claim that the costs of adopting the leading proposals would be ruinous to the U.S. economy. The world’s leading economists who have studied the issue say that’s wrong — and you can find out for yourself,” said Robert Repetto, professor in the practice of economics and sustainable development at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies who created the site.
The interactive website,
synthesized thousands of policy analyses in order to identify the seven key assumptions accounting for most of the differences in the model predictions. The site allows visitors to choose which assumptions they feel are most realistic and then view the predictions of the economic models based on the chosen assumptions.
March 19, 2008
A group of volunteer engineers are finishing the design for a home-brewed wind turbine that will bring electricity to off-the-grid Guatemalan villages by this summer.
After the U.S. engineers finish the design, local workers in the town of Quetzaltenango will manufacture the small-scale turbine. It will produce 10-15 watts of electricity, enough to charge a 12-volt battery that can power simple devices like LED lights.
March 17, 2008
ZURICH, Switzerland (AP) -- Glaciers are shrinking at record rates and many could disappear within decades, the U.N. Environment Program said Sunday.
Scientists measuring the health of almost 30 glaciers around the world found that ice loss reached record levels in 2006, the U.N. agency said.
UNEP warned that further ice loss could have dramatic consequences particularly in India, whose rivers are fed by Himalayan glaciers.
Haeberli said glaciers lost an average of about a foot of ice a year between 1980 and 1999. But since the turn of the millennium the average loss has increased to about 20 inches.
March 8, 2008
Plan B 3.0 Mobilizing to Save Civilization
The Himalayan glaciers that feed the rivers that irrigate the rice fields of China and the wheat fields of India are disappearing at a rate of 7% a year. - "Global Outlook for Ice and Snow" UN Environment Program Nairobi 2007
Crop withering heat waves have lowered grain harvests in recent years. Record high temperatures in 2002 and 2003 reduced the world grain output 90 million tons or 5% below actual grain consumption.
In 7 of the last 8 years, world grain production has fallen short of consumption. Worldwide carryover stocks are at their lowest level in 34 years. We are eating into our grain reserves.
Worldwide grain production peaked at 342 kilograms per capita in 1984, dropping to 302 kilograms per capita in 2006.
When oil prices rose above $60 a barrel, corn based distillation of ethanol became enormously profitable. The United States is now the largest producer of Ethanol, eclipsing Brazil in 2005.
81 million tons of the 2007 US corn harvest was used to create ethanol. This is 20% of US corn production. It generated less than 4% of US automotive fuel.
The grain required to fill one 25 gallon tank with ethanol will feed one person for a year.
The 2 billion poorest people in the world use 60% of their income to buy food.
As the share of US corn production dedicated to ethanol increases, it is driving up food prices around the world. In September 2007, the price of corn was nearly double what it was 2 years before. Wheat prices have also doubled and soybean prices have gone up by more than 50%.
Four years ago a study by Runge and Senauer of UMinn projected the number of hungy people decreasing to 625 milllion in 2025. An update of those projections, based on the massive diversion of grain to ethanol production, shows the number of hungry and mal-nourished people rising to 1.2 billion by 2025.
The competition between the owners of the world's 860 million automobiles and the 2 billion poorest people in the world is uncharted territory for humanity.
Although there are no alternatives to food for people, there are alternatives to using ethanol for vehicles. For example, the 4% of automotive fuel supplied using ethanol could be replaced several times over by increased fuel efficiency standards. And at a cost much lower than we are spending on ethanol.
February 16, 2008
Is the to-do list of preparing waste-free school lunches; lobbying for green building codes; transforming oneself into a "locovore," eating locally grown food; and remembering not to idle the car when picking up children from school a bit overwhelming?
The EcoMom Alliance is here to help!
Their theme - Sustain Your Home, Sustain Your Planet, Sustain Your Self
Women have been instrumental in the environmental movement from the start, including their involvement in campaigns a century ago to save the Palisades along the Hudson River and sequoias in California and, more recently, Lois Gibbs's fight against toxic waste at Love Canal.
In public opinion surveys, women express significantly higher levels of environmental concern than men, said Riley Dunlap, a professor of sociology at Oklahoma State University.
Lately "local lifestyle activism," much of it driven by women, has been on the rise and is likely to continue, Dr. Dunlap said.
Members of the EcoMom Alliance "are fighting a values battle," said Tim Kasser, the author of "The High Price of Materialism." "They are ...trying to figure out how to create a life more oriented toward intrinsic values."
February 15, 2008
The final choices fall into four themes that are essential for humanity to flourish -- sustainability, health, reducing vulnerability, and joy of living. The committee did not attempt to include every important challenge, nor did it endorse particular approaches to meeting those selected. Rather than focusing on predictions or gee-whiz gadgets, the goal was to identify what needs to be done to help people and the planet thrive.
Make solar energy affordable
Provide energy from fusion
Develop carbon sequestration methods
Manage the nitrogen cycle
Provide access to clean water
Restore and improve urban infrastructure
Advance health informatics
Engineer better medicines
Reverse-engineer the brain
Prevent nuclear terror
Enhance virtual reality
Advance personalized learning
Engineer the tools for scientific discovery
The panel, some of the most accomplished engineers and scientists of their generation, was established in 2006 and met several times to discuss and develop the list of challenges. Through an interactive Web site, the effort received worldwide input from prominent engineers and scientists, as well as from the general public, over a one-year period. The panel's conclusions were reviewed by more than 50 subject-matter experts.
"We chose engineering challenges that we feel can, through creativity and commitment, be realistically met, most of them early in this century," said committee chair and former U.S. Secretary of Defense William J. Perry. "Some can be, and should be, achieved as soon as possible."
The committee decided not to rank the challenges. NAE is offering the public an opportunity to vote on which one they think is most important and to provide comments at the project Web site -- <www.engineeringchallenges.org>.
The Grand Challenges site features a five-minute video overview of the project along with committee member interview excerpts. A podcast of the news conference announcing the challenges will also be available on the site starting next week.
"Meeting these challenges would be 'game changing,'" said NAE president Charles M. Vest. "Success with any one of them could dramatically improve life for everyone."
"Tremendous advances in quality of life have come from improved technology in areas such as farming and manufacturing," added Larry Page, co-founder of Google and a committee member. "If we focus our effort on the grand challenges of our age, we can hugely improve the future."
WILLIAM PERRY (COMMITTEE CHAIR), former secretary of defense, U.S. Department of Defense, and Michael and Barbara Berberian Professor and professor of engineering, Stanford University
ALEC BROERS, chairman, Science and Technology Select Committee, United Kingdom House of Lords
FAROUK EL-BAZ, research professor and director, Center for Remote Sensing, Boston University
WESLEY HARRIS, department head and Charles Stark Draper Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
BERNADINE HEALY, former director, U.S. National Institutes of Health, and health editor and columnist, U.S. News & World Report
W. DANIEL HILLIS, chairman and co-founder, Applied Minds Inc.
CALESTOUS JUMA, professor of the practice of international development, Harvard University
DEAN KAMEN, founder and president, DEKA Research and Development Corp.
RAYMOND KURZWEIL, chairman and chief executive officer, Kurzweil Technologies Inc.
ROBERT LANGER, Institute Professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
JAIME LERNER, architect and urban planner, Instituto Jaime Lerner
BINDU LOHANI, director general and chief compliance officer, Asian Development Bank
JANE LUBCHENCO, Wayne and Gladys Valley Professor of Marine Biology and Distinguished Professor of Zoology, Oregon State University
MARIO MOLÍNA, Nobel laureate and professor of chemistry and biochemistry, University of California, San Diego
LARRY PAGE, co-founder and president of products, Google Inc.
ROBERT SOCOLOW, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, Princeton University Environmental Institute
J. CRAIG VENTER, president, The J. Craig Venter Institute
JACKIE YING, executive director, Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology
The National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine, and National Research Council make up the National Academies. They are private, nonprofit institutions that provide science, technology, and health policy advice under a congressional charter.
It provides a way for you to enter your location, your energy usage, and calculates the cost of a solar system, including all the State and Federal tax incentives!
Make sure that you update your electricity usage based on your current cost per kilowatt-hour.
The default value in the web form is 8 cents per kilowatt-hour. This was the national average for electricity a couple years ago and electricity rates have been rising rapidly in the last couple years.
Another parameter you might want to change is the expected percentage rate that electricity will increase each year.
The default number in the form is 3%.
In Massachusetts we've been averaging 10% over the last 10 years....
February 14, 2008
Lake Mead Could Be Dry by 2021
Analysis of current and scheduled use and human-induced climate change sparks urgent warning from researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego
There is a 50 percent chance Lake Mead, a key source of water for millions of people in the southwestern United States, will be dry by 2021 if climate changes as expected and future water usage is not curtailed, according to a pair of researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego."When Will Lake Mead Go Dry?"
February 1, 2008
Let your elected officials know that "Clean Coal" is an oxymoron and that the FutureGen money could be better spent to accelerate solar and other renewable energy sources which have a much higher ROI.
Higher Costs Cited as U.S. Shuts Down Coal Project
January 30, 2008
The State of Green Business Report 2008 gives a bracingly candid interpretation of businesses' green and greenwashing efforts, noting that only eight of 20 indicators showed progress in 2007. Two of the 20 indicators, e-waste and carbon intensity, actually got worse..
January 28, 2008
Once the ship has reached the open sea, it reveals its brand new weapon in the fight against global warming: a kite.
Cargo Ship Powered by Kite Video
January 26, 2008
The map shows areas in 2007 that were warmer (reds) and colder (blues) than the mean annual temperature from 1951-1980. (Credit: NASA/GISS)
The American Geophysical Union, the world’s largest organization representing earth and space scientists, put out a fresh statement on the causes and consequences of recent climate change and possible responses. The union’s statement is firmer and has more policy prescriptions than the one from 2003.
"Warming greater than 2°C above 19th century levels is projected to be disruptive, reducing global agricultural productivity, causing widespread loss of biodiversity... If this 2°C warming is to be avoided, then our net annual emissions of CO2 must be reduced by more than 50 percent within this century."
January 25, 2008
Coskata uses existing gasification technology to convert almost any organic material into synthesis gas, which is a mix of carbon monoxide and hydrogen. Rather than fermenting that gas or using thermo-chemical catalysts to produce ethanol, Coskata pumps it into a reactor containing bacteria that consume the gas and excrete ethanol. Richard Tobey, Coskata's vice president of engineering, says the process yields 99.7 percent pure ethanol.
May Wu, an environmental scientist at Argonne National Laboratory, says Coskata's ethanol produces 84 percent less greenhouse gas than fossil fuel even after accounting for the energy needed to produce and transport the feedstock. It also generates 7.7 times more energy than is required to produce it. Corn ethanol typically generates 1.3 times more energy than is used producing it.
Ethanol for $1 a Gallon without Corn
January 22, 2008
Every dollar invested in a Green stimulus package can help our economy today by reducing the need for imported oil. Investing in renewable energy stimulus package will be like the gift that keeps on giving for the next 20 or 30 years.
By clicking the link above, you'll be able to sign an electronic petition to Congress organized by the One Sky organization.
One Sky. One Climate. One World. One Chance.
January 4, 2008
"Contrary to a longstanding perception among developers that building green homes is not financially feasible, Carter Scott, [President, Transformations, Inc.], says the subdivision is proof that developers can be environmentally sensitive - and make a profit."
"Transformations introduced a number of environmental features in the five-home subdivision in Tyngsborough. Included in each house are solar panels for electricity, a system that extracts heat from the ground in winter, and rain gardens that naturally recharge water into the soil.
The development garnered the company the 2005 Energy Star Custom Builder of the Year Award from the US Green Building Council, a nonprofit organization that supports sustainable building practices."
"We actually made more money off it," Scott said. "It can come back to you in different ways."
Another developer, Donald Sienkiewicz, " is taking up the cause of the green movement and building 22 ecologically sensitive homes in Wilton, N.H. The homes, now going through the permitting process, will be super insulated, have solar electrical panels, and will feature large south-facing windows, which helps heat the buildings in winter, he said."
Sienkiewcz is convinced that ecologically sensitive housing commands higher prices as they are not only good for the environment, but also substantially cheaper to heat.
"A coupled climate-air pollution model was used to show by cause and
effect that increases in fossil-fuel CO2 increase U.S. surface ozone, carcinogens, and particulate matter, thereby increasing death, asthma, hospitalization, and cancer rates."