Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Cleantech News from CleanTechnica

Cleantech News from CleanTechnica

Link to CleanTechnica

Arsenal FC Hits The Back Of The Net With 2 New Electric Cars

Posted: 06 Nov 2012 04:00 PM PST

Chalk up another goal in the world of environmental sustainability in sports. Arsenal FC, one of England's and Europe's top soccer clubs, recently brought two electric cars to its fleet of vehicles.

Citroen, Arsenal's fleet supplier, said it's providing two of the company’s C-Zero electric vehicles for Emirates Stadium, the club’s home field, according to BusinessGreen.

The all-electric vehicles will allow officials and staff to travel between Emirates Stadium and the club's training ground in London Colney.

With the C-Zero car able to go 93 miles (at 80 miles per hour) on a single charge, it's understandable why Arsenal chose this type of vehicle to get key staff and personnel around London.

“Arsenal is committed to being a more environmentally friendly organisation and working with our partners to improve our overall efficiency,” Vinai Venkatesham, head of Arsenal FC global partnerships, said.

Arsenal's move towards sustainable transportation is the latest in a list of soccer-related teams and organizations supporting environmental sustainability.

In May, we reported that Rio De Janeiro's legendary Maracana Stadium was going solar, as well as various other Brazilian soccer stadiums, just in time for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

Meanwhile, the US Soccer Federation signed a partnership with Yingli this year, to help promote solar energy in low-income neighborhoods.

As a game with a global appearance (the most popular in the world), soccer is showing how to broaden the appeal of environmental sustainability to the general public. This is only going to continue to grow in soccer and other sports, as climate risks and disasters will increasingly affect the games we love to watch.

12,000 MW Of Renewables Possible By 2020 For Mexico

Posted: 06 Nov 2012 03:27 PM PST

At the Annual Energy Border Forum in October, a number of insiders discussed the potential for Mexico to grow its renewable power capacity to 12 GW (12,000 MW) in a short period of time, a target 2020 wind target I reported on back in May.


A member of the Asociación Mexicana de Energía Eólica, Pablo Gottfried Blackmore, said: “Our goal is 12 GW, and the Secretaria de Energia already has adopted that number. Studies we have analyzed seem to agree that there is 20 GW of wind potential in Mexico that would be competitive with gas prices. It is critical to bring in the small producers to reach this goal, however.” Part of the plan might include turning the US-Mexican border into an energy corridor.

In October of this year, Mexico’s wind power capacity was about 1,000 MW. That number might be expanded to 2,500 MW by 2014. In 2002, it was just 2 MW.

Sonora state has the best insolation rate in North America. According to one source, a single area dedicated to solar power production may have the potential to power the whole country. “Assuming a net system efficiency of 15%, a square of 25 km in Chihuahua or in the Sonora desert would be sufficient to supply all of Mexico’s electricity (based on information provided by Energy Department and GTZ (2009) at the ‘Renewable Energy for Sustainable Development in México’ study).”

The passing of a clean climate law in Mexico has been part of the country’s emerging renewable energy transition. Sales of Mexican crude oil for export have been declining due to aging oil fields and underinvestment. It will be fascinating to see if Mexico can ramp up its wind and solar power quickly, and what impact that could have on its national economy.

Image Credit: Sgt. 1st Class Gordon Hyde

GreenBiz Charts Creation Of Sustainability Jobs In The VERGE Economy

Posted: 06 Nov 2012 03:12 PM PST

Finding a job and building a career is particularly tough these days, with technology and economies changing so fast. New types of jobs and careers are being created even as longstanding ones are lost. Among the former, "green" jobs and professions that help businesses reduce energy and resource use (as well as find better, more sustainable alternatives) are pegged to be among the fastest growing, not just in the US, but globally.

New job and career opportunities are emerging particularly fast in energy, transportation, and built environment, a group of economic sectors GreenBiz has dubbed the "VERGE Economy."

Aiming to assist those looking to identify and map sustainable business job types and professions in the emerging VERGE Economy, GreenBiz has put together a helpful infographic (below). GreenBiz has also organized a VERGE@Greenbuild conference at the Intercontinental Hotel in San Francisco Nov. 12-13.

Read on — it just might spark an interest that leads to a new rewarding job and career path…. (Click on the infographic and then click on it again on the next page to get a better view.)

2 More Election 2012 Posts (Last 2?)

Posted: 06 Nov 2012 10:09 AM PST

To wrap up our election 2012 coverage (I think), I just wanted to highlight a couple more posts on this year’s presidential and congressional elections.

Solar Power World: Give President Obama Four More Years: Frank Andorka of Solar Power World carefully reviewed the energy policies of Obama and Romney (in their own words), presenting them to his readers over there in a sereis of posts. In the end, he put out a clear endorsement of Obama.

As part of that, Andorka states: “In the past four years, the solar industry has expanded exponentially to employ 100,000 people (with expansion to 110,000 by the end of 2012), President Obama has fought for polices and programs that facilitated that growth. He supported the 1603 Treasury Program, the Department of Energy Loan Guarantee program and the Department of Energy's Sunshot Initiative. He mentions solar specifically in every speech he gives about energy, something his opponent refuses to do.”

Check it the full story (linked above) for more.

Clear Differences Between The Parties: In my final full post on the election, I noted that there are considerable differences between Republican political leadership and Democratic political leadership these days. In particular, I focused on environmental, energy, and economic issues that I think should be important to just about any human being in the United States (and many beyond it). If you’re interested in hearing even more from me on these matters than you already have, check the link above.

But what about you all? Which stories have most resonated with you? Feel free to drop links to those in the comments below, and to quote them liberally.

Re-Nuble Offers Odorless (!!) Organic Waste Recycling

Posted: 06 Nov 2012 08:41 AM PST

Most people hear the word “recycle” and think of paper, plastic, or aluminum. What they don’t always consider is organic waste recycling.

Re-Nuble Organic Waste RecyclingOrganic waste recycling doesn’t always mean something like “compost heap” or “feed the chickens” (and I have personal experience with both of these, neither of which are pleasant). The people over at Re-Nuble have what they’re calling a net-positive closed-loop system to get useful stuff out of organic waste.

Organic Waste Recycling For Green Energy And Fertilizer

The system Re-Nuble picks up organic waste from farmers, supermarkets, and restaurants and then tosses it into a closed compartment with the proper micro-organisms, at which point everyone is happy — the closed compartment means people in the vicinity can’t smell the process, the micro-organisms are having a blast, and Re-Nuble gets electricity and organic fertilizer to sell! It’s a pretty efficient system.

The ‘minor’ matter of reduced fossil fuel use — both for transportation of said fertilizer (since odorless means the facility can be located closer to its customers) and in the fertilizer itself (because organic) — is also a win.

The other side-effect of an organic waste recycling system like Re-Nuble’s means that less of that organic waste is reaching landfills — which in turn means that the landfill itself not only doesn’t smell as horrific, but it also produces less methane as a result of rotting formerly-edibles. (Although, personally, I’m happiest about the “less stuff in landfills” part of that.)

Re-Nuble is currently holding a fundraiser to launch its system — head on over, take a loo, and chip in!

Source: ReNuble on Indiegogo

Related Story:

Solar Fence Could Protect Elephants

Posted: 06 Nov 2012 08:10 AM PST

New fencing powered by solar in India could protect farmer’s crops and elephants, a story from The Times of India notes. Currently some farmers are using live wires to try to protect their crop fields, but the voltage is too high and recently five elephants died when they came in contact with them.

While this number of elephant deaths might sound small, they occurred in just a one-month period. In one operation, authorities confiscated approximately 900 meters of wire used by farmers in the Narayanpatna area.


One could easily sympathize with the farmers when they lose essential crops to elephants, but the elephant deaths are hardly a humane solution. Another potential issue is the encroachment by humans into elephant habitat. Conflict between elephants and humans results in many deaths each year.

While some may be skeptical that a mere electric fence can stop elephants, an organization called Saving Elephants by Helping People has made an important distinction in fencing approaches. Previously, some efforts have been made to fence elephants within a portion of land. These attempts were not successful, but fencing elephants out of certain spaces has been. (The Virginia Dept. of Game and Fish has stated that electric fences can even be highly effective deterrents for bears, which are predators.)

Still, if there is a drought which leads to a drastic decline in food sources, wild elephants may simply trample electric fences to get to crops. Elephants are intelligent and may learn over time the electric shocks are painful, but not harmful.

One thing that might be an even better elephant deterrent is wild bees, because apparently elephants fear them strongly.

Image Credit: Jayanand Govindaraj, Wiki Commons

Chevy Volt Broke Its Own Sales Record In October, And Leaf Sales Soared

Posted: 06 Nov 2012 08:02 AM PST

Chevy Volt sales have been increasing (slowly, but steadily) over the past few months. From August to September, they increased by just 20 vehicles… but at least they followed an upward trend, and set a new sales record.

Sales in October were 2,961 and they could exceed 3,000 units in November.

Image Credit: Chevrolet

Nissan Leaf sales also jumped up a bit. In June 2011, Nissan Leaf sales reached their highest number to date (1,708), and sales still haven’t surpassed that, but they soared to 1,579 in October from the hundreds that they were at in previous months.

Image Credit: Nissan

Electric vehicle sales usually increase with high gas prices, and when gas prices go back down, it is business as usual, and sales decrease. Interestingly, though, gas prices have dropped since last month. Let’s hope the sales just keep on growing.

Source: Autoblog Green

Welspun To Partly Fund A 100 MW Solar Power Plant In Chhattisgarh

Posted: 06 Nov 2012 07:35 AM PST

A 100 MW solar power plant is to be constructed in the state of Chhattisgarh, India by Welspun Renewables Energy Ltd, which is backed by the textiles-to-infrastructure conglomerate Welspun Group.

thomas edison clean energy

Welspun, the Wall Street Journal reports, will partly fund it with 10 billion rupees, or $183 million USD. This means that it is providing $1.83 USD per watt of the project cost.

Vineet Mittal, the co-founder of Welspun Renewables Energy Ltd, said that the company will secure the necessary loans to partly fund the project. The state government will facilitate the project by approving it and acquiring land for it.

Welspun plants to build a total of 750 MW of solar power generating capacity in India in the next few years. It also intends to build 1,000 MW of wind power generation capacity during the same period.

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