Thursday, August 13, 2009

Bangladesh Gets $19 Million from US & Germany for Reforestation Project

"A couple weeks ago Bangladesh's environment minister outlined how the country want to spend over $4 billion on climate change adaptation and mitigation projects, and want some rich nations to help foot the bill. It appears that the US and Germany have contributed already -- contributing $19 million for reforestation of a wildlife sanctuary"

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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Congress Scraps Plan to Buy Itself New Jets

"You may have heard some of the criticism (it was quite vocal) leveled at Democratic Congressmen who added $330 million to the Air Force budget for state-of-the-art jets that the Pentagon said it didn't want or need. Much of the furor arose since Congress appeared to be buying unnecessary, extravagant airplanes precisely at a time when the same very lawmakers are lambasting corporations for buying and using such unnecessary, extravagant airplanes. In response to all the hubbub, the Dems have said they'll scrap the plan."

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Prius Sales are Exploding in Japan: 392% More than a Year Ago in July

"People Wouldn't Have Believed You a Few Years Ago

The stars were aligned for the Prius in Japan: A new model, rising fuel prices, and new government incentives. The Prius has been the #1 car in Japan for three months in a row, and there's a 10-month waiting list according to some reports, with production maxed out because there aren't
enough battery packs to make more (Panasonic EV Energy makes 500,000 a year)."

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"NASA is using decades of space exploration technology to build a new eco-aware base here in California.

Using an advanced central computer, the building will access online weather forecasts and set the building's interior climate accordingly. Sensors around the structure allow it to adjusts for changes in sunlight, wind, and temperature. For example, if the building detects a cool could very well open the windows.

It will also adjust the room temperature based on how many occupants. The California heat will be thwarted by geothermal wells that route naturally cooled water throughout the building in lieu of using air conditioning."

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10 Countries With the Highest Deforestation Rates in the World

"Hopefully it comes as no great surprise to you that deforestation is a major problem in many areas of the world, both it terms of preserving biodiversity and preventing climate change -- some countries are chopping down their forests at astonishing rates. But what you may not know is which nations really have the highest rates of deforestation..."

Click Here for the results

Monday, August 10, 2009

Lamborghini Announces Hybrid Coming In 2015

"Exotic car maker Lamborghini has announced they will be entering the hybrid fray with their iconic Gallardo.
Company CEO Stephan Winkelmann told Germany's Automobilewoche that the first one is slated for 2015. He says that the Gallardo's electric motor will be used for low demand driving in slow, congested city traffic much like the Toyota Prius. When the Lambo hits higher speeds the 10- or 12-cylinder gas engine will kick in and immediately drop your MPGs back to a single digit."

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Would Climate Skeptics Listen If The Messenger Was The Military?

"Climate deniers, and those who wish to convert them, would do well to read John Broder's New York Times article today, "Climate Change Seen as Threat to U.S. Security." In it, Broder reports that for some time the military has been factoring in climate change into their war game scenarios. They expect that in the decades to come, global warming will cause population displacement, mass drought, and food shortages that will provide the U.S. will significant national security threats."

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Green Building in Vegas, Stays in Vegas

"After local ordinances have gone back and forth on huge tax incentives for green construction in Las Vegas, Nevada, the famed Strip will soon be home to what it’s calling “one of the world’s largest sustainable developments,” the CityCenter. Will aneco-theme park soon follow?"

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Friday, August 7, 2009

Toyota Shows Off FCHV-adv Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle With 431 Miles Range

"68.3 Miles per kilogram of H2
Hydrogen's not getting too much love these days, but it remains an important contender for the longer-term. Toyota has been working on its FCHV hydrogen Highlander for a while, and they recently took the latest version for a field test in California to see what the range would be like in real-world driving conditions."

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Charging Up Nissan's Electric Car Without Wires

"We recently heard that Nissan has a keen interest in wireless charging for what will soon be a whole family of electric cars. But in the days leading up to the unveiling of the flagship Leaf EV, I saw this contact-free charging technology with my own eyes. At the same demonstration where I drove the EV platform and saw the iPhone interface, we were shown a working example of induction charging in action. Look ma, no plug!"

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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Confirmed: America's Glaciers Shrinking Over Past 50 Years, Warming Climate to Blame

"Lest you have an lingering doubt about glaciers melting: The US Geological Surveyhas just released a report on long-term glacier measurements in the United States which confirms that, yes glaciers are melting as the climate warms. Interior SecretaryKen Salazar pointed out that this report is the result of 50 years of monitoring glaciers"

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Scandal Erupts Over Forged Anti-Climate Bill Letters

"How low can you go? I mean, I know we're talking about the coal industry here, but see if this does anything for you: details are continuing to emerge about how a coalition of coal companies hired a lobbying firm that mailed forged letters--supposedly from civil rights groups like the NAACP--to Representatives getting ready to cast a vote on the climate bill. The letters denounced the climate bill, and urged the congressmen to vote against it. And they were entirely fake."

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Warren Buffett Makes $1 Billion Profit on Electric Car Maker BYD

"In Less Than a Year
Last fall, Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway bought a 10% stake in Chinese electric car maker BYD last fall (and is reported to have wanted more than 10%), and despite the huge slowdown of the world economy since then and the big slump in car sales, BYD's share has increased about fivefold in value at the Hong Kong stock exchange. This gives Mr. Buffett a cool $1 billion in paper profits (it's a "paper profit" because he hasn't sold his stake). But that's not all, Buffett is now putting more cash in BYD."

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Boeing Hydroplane Makes First 100% Biofuel Test Run

Though the event this Boeing Hydroplane is being used for is a little silly, this could be a good direction for the engineering of Biofueled Commercial Jetliners. Here is what the Biofuel is made out of:
"Camelina + Jatropha + Algae

The feedstock used for the biofuel was 85% camelina (grown by Targeted Growth) , 14% jatropha, and 1% algae.

Same Fuel as Used on JAL Test Flight

This is the same biofuel mixture that was used on a JAL test flight back in January, that showed that biofuels can be more efficient that petroleum-based fuels in jet engines."

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Obama Announces $2.4 Billion in Grants for Batteries and Electric Cars

"48 Different Projects Will Share the Loot
President Obama was in Indiana today to announce how $2.4 billion dollars from the Recovery Act will be divided up between 48 different battery and electric vehicle projects. "With these investments, we're planting the seeds of progress for our country and good-paying, private-sector jobs for the American people," he said. Most of the grant winners are familiar names, with Detroit firms getting a substantial share. But who's the biggest winner?"

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Climate Changes Closes World's Highest Ski Run

"The 18,000-year-old glacier in Bolivia that provided the world with its highest ski run has just finished completely drying up, thanks to our old pal climate change. And of course, it's taken the run with it. Now, thrill-seeking skiers will no longer be able to bomb down the slopes at 17,785 ft--but far worse, the glacier will no longer provide much needed water to the 2 million people that live around Bolivia's nearby capitol La Paz.

The glacier has dried up 6 years earlier than most predictions had foreseen--the nasty work of global warming. Bloomberg reports"

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Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Amazon Deforestation Shoots Up in June

"Though Brazil has pledged to slow Amazon deforestation, and several groups are making headlines trying to tackle the leading cause of that deforestation, cattle ranching, AFP reports new data from Brazil's National Institute for Space Research that shows the area of trees chopped down in June was four times that of May"

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Solar Forest Keeps Cars Cool And Juiced

"Designer Neville Mars has designed a charging station that keeps your car both cool and charged. Called the Solar Forest, the panels actually follow the sun throughout the day for maximum efficiency. And that canopy provides some much needed shade for the cars below, hopefully while keeping the overlap to a minimum. The tree trunks are like a giant power strips for electric vehicles. Cars can just plug in and cool off."

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How You'll Control Your Electric Car via iPhone

"Being in Yokohama for the unveiling of Nissan's new all-electric Leaf was a thrill, but the days leading up to the big event were actually more exciting. We were given a chance to take a test car for a whirl around the track, a car that is almost exactly like the final version, save for the fact that the body is a modified Tino. In the advanced technology briefing we examined a cutaway of the Leaf, showing its battery pack, alternator, motor, and charging ports, and we saw as a working demo of contact-free charging."

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The Climate Bill Will Cost You 23¢ a Day

"You've surely heard various competing claims about how much the American Clean Energy & Security Act will increase energy prices. Well, new analysis carried out by theEnergy Information Agency, at the request of Reps. Waxman and Markey, confirms earlier estimates that while the bill will cost consumers, it won't cost them very much"

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Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Global Warming Could Cause Evolution Explosion

"Undoubtedly you've seen dire predictions about the number of plant and animal species which will be forced into extinction by global warming, their habitat changing faster than they can either adapt to it or move somewhere else. Well, a fascinating new article in Yale Environment 360 by Carl Zimmer offers a glimmer of hope -- it appears that at least some species may be able to rapidly evolve to a changing climate"

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Chinese Town Poisoned by Batteries

"Health checks on nearly 3,000 people living near the plant in Liuyang county, Hunan province, revealed 509 had excessive levels of cadmium, a toxic heavy metal [which is used to make batteries]."

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Emma Watson Launches Sustainable Clothing Line

"From Hogwarts to haute couture, our little Hermione is growing up fast. But rumor has it that Emma Watson, who also happens to be the new face of Burberry, isn't content to merely play clotheshorse—the fashion-forward ingenue might be designing her own line with organic and fair-trade clothier People Tree, according the Daily Mail."

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Recent Study Finds No Benefit to Organic Food

"A recent study out of the UK, commissioned by the British government's Food Standards Agency (FSA), is claiming there are no benefits to organic foods, local organizations are lashing out saying it's not true."

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New Study Predicts US Energy Future

"To reduce emissions to levels set by the climate bill (which we all know aren't nearly low enough), the US is going to need at least 45 new nuclear power plants by 2030. It's also going to need to reduce general power consumption by 8%, according to a study done by the Electric Power Research Institute, whose members are responsible for generating 90% of the nation's electricity. And that's just the tip of the iceberg of the group's forecast for the energy future of the United States . . .
According to Bloomberg, the report also calls for "building 100 million plug-in electric vehicles and retrofitting about 18 percent of U.S. coal-power plants to capture emissions." A pretty tall order, to say the least, considering we barely have a million Priuses on the road--100 million plug in electric in the next 20 years (even the next 40) would be fantastic, but is it feasible?"

Click Here for the full article

Monday, August 3, 2009

Carbon Emissions From Amazon Forests Increase

"By now I'm sure you know that deforestation is a major source of carbon emissions -- in fact more than all the fuel burned for transportation -- which would be enough to worry about, except that when it comes to emissions from chopping down trees in the Amazon, those emissions are actually increasing as loggers move deeper into the forest. That's what researchers are saying in a new paper in the journal Geophysical Research Letters "

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Chief Economist Says Oil Supplies Running Out Fast

"Predicting exactly when peak oil will hit is somewhat like reading tea leaves -- transparency is reserve data is so lacking that opacity is a better descriptor and the current economic downturn doesn't help -- But one thing is beyond a doubt: Oil fields are becoming depleted much faster than thought just two years ago and the end of cheap oil is decidedly over. That's the word in The Independent from International Energy Agency chief economist Dr Fatih Birol"

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Army Plans 500 MW of Solar Power at Fort Irwin by 2022

"Last October, the US Army announced that it would be developing a 500 MW solar thermal power plant at Fort Irwin, California. At the time details as to who would be developing the project and when it might come online were lacking, but we now have more details on that"

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World's First Eco Theme Park

"Activist group Global Inheritance is not short on innovative ideas for engaging youth in environmental action. From their Plug n Play Energy Bike to chartering a train to Coachella festival to hip hop compost with The Roots, these guys seem to get the right mix of attitude, combined with some serious, positive content. Their latest venture sounds particularly intriguing - the world's first environmental theme park has just opened its doors!"

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Forged Letters by Lobbyists Against the Climate Bill

"Prior to the vote on the climate bill back in June, Congressman Tom Perriello (D-VA) received a a letter from Hispanic community group Creciendo Juntos urging him to vote against the bill -- the trouble is that the letter was forged and sent on behalf of an undisclosed client by lobbyists Bonner & Associates"

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Solar-Powered Ferries Coming to Hong Kong

"The boats were purchased by the Hong Kong Jockey Club as part of a $45 million effort towards making the city more sustainable; and will be used to ferry golfers to the Kau Sai Chau Public Golf Course."

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