Most Americans now agree that something needs to be done to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. Hopefully most Americans now appreciate that this is not a small, but even more so, not a simple problem. I am a big believer that the playing field for our low carbon future should start level, and the market should be structured to allow our major power and energy companies a chance to lead the way, instead of simply dishing out punishment for our combined historical choices. Carrots and sticks work well together, but sticks alone are not going to solve our global carbon … Read more
A San Francisco nightclub installed on Monday what it's promoting as the city's first vertical garden. Several plant-filled boxes turned on their sides and bolted outside near the entrance are the first step in the Zen Compound's plans to cover the facade of the building in greenery.
"The hope is to have a living building," said Mike Zuckerman, director of sustainability at the 40,000 square foot complex. He spotted a butterfly hovering near native licorice ferns on Tuesday.
Those little things add up, says Tony Pace, senior vice president of marketing at Subway.
The company switched from buying plastic cutlery made from polystyrene to polypropylene, he noted. The switch saves about 100,000 pounds of resin a year, which translates to 2,800 barrels of oil saved and 1,200 metric tons of carbon dioxide not ejected into the atmosphere, he said.
The chain hands out roughly 400,000 pieces of cutlery a day.
It also switched to polypropylene for its cups. That saves about 515,000 pounds of resin, or 10, barrels of oil saved.
Expect to … Read more
It's chemistry for washing your car.
Lucky Earth Products has come up with a liquid, called Green Earth Waterless Car Wash, that lets you wash your car without buckets, hoses, brushes, or gallons of water. The compound--made out of water, coconut extracts, silicone, and a bit of salt--gets misted onto your car. Once there, it attracts dirt via electrostatic principles and encapsulates it. The owner then wipes their car with a soft cloth.
A $20 jug containing 32 ounces of the liquid is good for about 10 car washes. Additionally, the company has liquids for cleaning tires (Tire Shine) … Read more
I've been curious recently about how much electricity all our devices that stay plugged in all the time and in some sort of standby mode consume, even when we are not actually using them. And what does that translate into in terms of real money?
The real surprise on it is plasma TVs--who knew they were sucking so much energy when "off"? And that game console of yours? It's costing you $25 a year just sitting there, even when you're not using … Read more
Dealing a blow to the solar and wind industries, the U.S. Senate is expected to pass an energy bill later on Thursday that strips out a tax provision to encourage investment in renewable energies.
The House last week passed an energy bill that extended tax incentives beyond 2008 for businesses and consumers who purchase renewable energy systems.
On Thursday, the Senate delayed passage of the bill until later today, a move which will lead to the removal of the tax provision, according to industry executives and published reports.
The centerpiece of the energy bill is an overhaul to the … Read more
Solar thermal company Ausra will cut the ribbon on a large factory in anticipation of a construction boom in solar power plants in the Southwest United States.
Flanked by government officials, Ausra executives are scheduled to dedicate a 130,000-square-foot facility capable of turning out enough thermal collectors to generate 200 megawatts every month. That translates into about 70 megawatts of electricity capacity per month, according to the company.
At that rate, the plant will be be able to manufacture enough electricity capacity to power half a million homes per year year at equivalent prices to gas-fired power plants, said … Read more
Correction at 3:30 p.m. PST Thursday: Blame my Rust Belt ignorance. The Ohio river that burned is the Cuyahoga.
SAN FRANCISCO--I've been spending some time at the the American Geophysical Union conference here, and I've had a recurring thought: When it comes to apocalyptic predictions, geophysicists have the Book of Revelations beat, hands down.
Sometime in the last few years, the idea that global warming is a reality and that it's caused in large measure by people has finally started sinking in. But perhaps because of the remaining skepticism, and more likely because of the … Read more
CNET News.com feature: The IT revolution sparked on the East and West Coasts of the United States and spread from there. But in green tech, the heartland got an early invitation.
Over the last three years, an avalanche of venture capital has flowed into start-ups developing technology to use natural resources more efficiently. Incumbent fuel producers and energy utilities are also investing in alternative fuels and power sources.
Most of the new company creation is rooted in the traditional financial investment centers in Silicon Valley and the Northeast U.S.
But the middle of the country is playing a … Read more
SAN FRANCISCO--Warmth may not be an attribute you associate with a place where the sun doesn't shine in the winter and the sea freezes over, but all things are relative. And compared to earlier years, the Arctic was downright sweltering this year.
According to new research presented here at the the American Geophysical Union conference, the Arctic Ocean reached record high temperatures, arctic ice diminished to a record low, and ice melted on Greenland for a record number of days.