renewable energy

solar sheep

Solar Sheep to the Rescue!

Many solar farm designers didn’t plan for the high grasses that would grow up and block precious sunlight from solar panels.  The solution? Solar sheep!  Here’s an eco-business that’s new, different, and in demand.

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Wind Tree Project Turns Street Art into Electric Power

A new French start-up, NewWind, is making wind power beautiful!  Their new Wind Tree offers almost a hundred mini-windmills on an apparatus designed to look like a tree. Due to the light construction of the “leaves,” the Wind Tree generates power at wind speeds as low as 4.4 miles per hour!  This translates into sustained operation times (an average of 320 days a year) that are almost double those of standard windmills that need higher wind speeds in order to…

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100% Local, Clean, Cheap Power is Possible Using Renewable Energy

I’ve written in the past about the fact that 100% of the world could be powered from clean, renewable energy. But to get to that 100% target, you need a lot of small 100% targets (i.e. 100% renewable energy for Scotland, for Tokelau, etc.). A report just out yesterday from the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research finds that Minnesota could easily go 100% renewable. Not only that, though — it could use 100% local clean power from solar and wind energy. That’s exciting.

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Renewable Energy Innovations: Revolutionary Photovoltaic Solar Panels Printed on Common Household Materials

We are inundated daily with so much bleak information about petroleum, as well as the many environmental problems and wars associated with oil, that it is a relief to read some positive energy news. Some creative thinkers are already devising much more sustainable technologies for our future.

This week the prestigious Lemelson-MIT award was given to Miles C. Barr, a scientist and “pay it forward” advocate, for his work developing an inexpensive process that can print photovoltaic solar cells on common items, like paper, fabric and ordinary construction materials.

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Denmark Aiming for 100% Renewable Energy by 2050

Not quite Scotland’s goal of 100% renewable energy by 2025, but still a highly ambitious one (relative to other countries), Denmark’s newest renewable energy target proposals aim to have wind supplying it with half of its electricity by 2020, and renewable energy supplying it with ALL of its energy by 2050. And all of its power and heat would come from renewables by 2035.

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South Korea to Build Largest Offshore Wind Farm (in World)

South Korea is a definite cleantech leader. Its cleantech investments per GDP are many, many times more than the US’, or any other country’s I’m aware of. Check out the graphics below on percentage of countries’ stimulus packages that went towards green technology — South Korea is the last pie.

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Solar Panel Installation in Australia Financially Driven (Not Environmentally Driven)

The results of a recent survey by Sun Connect, an Australian solar power installation company, show that rising electricity bills have a major influence on homeowner’s decisions to go solar. Respondents pointed to high electricity bills, anticipated electricity price rises, and pain caused by high power costs, as significant areas of concern. In fact, when solar panel owners were asked why they originally converted to solar, the results show that people were 2.6 times more likely to identify “electricity bills…

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Romania Home to Large, New Wind Energy Hub

Vestas is the world’s leading manufacturer of wind turbines. There are 41,000 Vestas wind turbines in 65 countries around the world, creating approximately 20,000 jobs. Together, they cut CO2 emissions by about 40 million tons every year. Vestas knows wind energy. It recently decided that it would locate its Eastern European wind energy hub in Romania. That means two things: 1) Romania is ripe for some serious wind energy growth, and 2) the country will be sure to get the…

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West Virginia Coal Miners Moving to Solar Industry

West Virginia coal miners have always taken pride in supplying energy to the world. Although their work hours are long and the hazards of the job are many. They reluctantly dig coal to support their families, because there are no other opportunities for these hard working individuals. In a state that is politically controlled by the coal industry, politicians are bought and paid for every election. The campaign funds provided insure that clean energy will not find its way into…

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Why Gender & Literacy Should Be Part of the Climate Change Discussion

  “Sure, I am all for access to education for women in developing countries, but what does it have to do with climate change,” a friend asked me recently over diner. I had just made the claim that development funding for women’s education was perhaps the most under discussed tool for preventing climate change. Hear me out. The discussions of climate change tend to localize around a few main topics: renewable energy technologies, carbon tax (or trade), consumption, climate science,…

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