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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Climate Change Mega-Map

New mega-map details all the ways climate change will affect our everyday lives
18 Jul 2014 - From flood barriers to fish stocks, a new super-graphic from the Met Office and the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office shows how climate change is likely to alter human activity.

Looking at where our food comes from and how countries interact through travel and trade, it makes for a stark visualisation of what different regions can expect as climate change kicks in.

Mega-map read more>>>


Monday, July 21, 2014

'reef effect' of Offshore wind farms

Offshore wind farms create 'reef effect' perfect for marine wildlife - especially seals
21 July 2014 - Wind farms and wildlife do not always go together: the giant turbines have been accused of luring species to their death, and the noise they generate can drive away certain marine mammals.

But wind farms have an unexpected benefit if you happen to be a harbour seal hunting for food in British waters, according to a new study. They are a magnet for hungry seals eager to take advantage of the fact that fish and crustaceans tend to cluster on the structures – which become artificial reefs for marine life over time.

Offshore wind farms can be fertile feeding grounds for seals who choose to seek them out – concludes the study, by an international team of researchers from Britain, Holland and the US, published yesterday in Current Biology Journal.

This is because the presence of a hard structure beneath the waves attracts barnacles and other crustaceans, and, in turn, fish. Dr Deborah Russell, a research fellow at the Scottish Oceans Institute at the University of St Andrews, explained how the “reef effect” attracts seals. “Things like barnacles and mussels will settle on hard structures and then that in turn will attract other marine species and it builds up over time.” read more>>>

Chelsea Green Publishing - the leading publisher of sustainable living books since 1985.


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Teaching about Using the Sun to Create Power

Free exhibit teaches about solar energy
The University of Tennessee's new solar farm exhibit helps teach about using the sun to create power.

July 19, 2014 - Visitors to the Knoxville Center can learn more about the sun at a free exhibit.

The University of Tennessee's new solar farm exhibit helps teach ways the sun creates power. The exhibit, called SPECTRUM, uses interactive activities. read more>>>

Solar Electricity Handbook - 2014 Edition: A Simple Practical Guide to Solar Energy - Designing and Installing Photovoltaic Solar Electric Systems


Friday, July 18, 2014

Guess who's winning the energy efficiency World Cup

Certainly not the U.S. as we allowed the special interests to block the growth into alternatives some forty years back and since, only excuse they can muster and finance now is 'climate change denial', as at the same time we started shipping off our innovative and experienced trades that had built an economic engine envied by most who now have those trades!

The International Energy Efficiency Scorecard
The International Energy Efficiency Scorecard ranks the world's largest economies on their energy efficiency policies and programs. The rankings include Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, South Korea, Spain, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Union.

Thirty-one different energy efficiency indicators have been analyzed for each economy ranked in the report. The rankings are determined by scoring out of 100 possible points. Points can be earned in four different categories, including buildings, industry, transportation, and national effort, which measures overall or cross-cutting indicators of energy use at the national level. read more>>>

Small Wind Turbine Generator for Clean Energy Power Production


Thursday, July 17, 2014

Stable and Cost-Cutting Perovskite Solar Cell

A new stable and cost-cutting type of perovskite solar cell
17 July 2014 - Perovskite solar cells show tremendous promise in propelling solar power into the marketplace. The cells use a hole-transportation layer, which promotes the efficient movement of electrical current after exposure to sunlight. However, manufacturing the hole-transportation organic materials is very costly and lack long term stability. Publishing in Science, a team of scientists in China, led by Professor Hongwei Han in cooperation with Professor Michael Gr├Ątzel at EPFL, have developed a perovskite solar cell that does not use a hole-transporting layer, with 12.8% conversion efficiency and over 1000 hours stability under full sunlight in ambient temperature. The innovation can reduce the cost of perovskite cells, and firmly propel them into the marketplace.

Hybrid organic–inorganic methylammonium lead halide perovskites have attracted intense attention for thin-film photovoltaics, due to their large absorption coefficient, high charge carrier mobility and long diffusion length. However, these cells are also costly because of the hole-transportation layer, which demands high purity materials and complicated fabrication procedures. read more>>>

DIY Solar Projects: How to Put the Sun to Work in Your Home


Post-Combustion Carbon Capture Project

World’s Largest Post-Combustion Carbon Capture Project Begins Construction
Department of Energy Supported Project Will Capture 1.4 Million Tons of CO2 Annually

Jul. 15, 2014 - Today, the Department of Energy – in partnership with NRG Energy Inc. and JX Nippon – announced that construction has begun on the first commercial-scale post-combustion carbon capture retrofit project in the U.S., the largest such project in the world. The Petra Nova Project will use this cutting edge technology to help decrease the power plant’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Once completed, the energy technology project will capture about 1.4 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) annually from an existing coal-fired power plant in Texas. The captured CO2 will then be used to extract additional, hard-to-access oil from a previously depleted field 80 miles away, safely storing the carbon underground in the process.

“As part of the President’s all-of-the-above approach to American energy, the Department is advancing the technologies that will help ensure we can continue to develop all of our abundant energy resources responsibly and sustainably,” said Secretary Ernest Moniz. “With coal expected to remain a significant part of the energy portfolio in the U.S. and internationally, first-of-a-kind projects like Petra Nova will move us toward a low-carbon energy future.” read more>>>

Lower your bills with energy efficient products from Eartheasy.com


Monday, July 14, 2014

Energy Politics: State-By-State Map

Fossil Interests Attack Clean Energy Politics: State-By-State Map
click on graphic for larger view

July 10th, 2014 - The Energy and Policy Institute recently gave renewable energy advocates some valuable election tips in a “follow the money” state-by-state look at anti-renewable groups. Among other efforts, EPI released Attacks on Renewable Energy Policy by Fossil Fuel Interests 2013–2014, with the energy politics infomap featured above.

The report tears the masks off front groups like ALEC, Heartland, and the National Center for Policy Analysis. The authors carefully document how and where fossil fuel advocates like Charles and David Koch are laying down big money to slow or reverse the momentum of renewable energy, and thus play politics with destructive climate change.

From the report: “Fossil fuel and utility interests, concerned about the rise of cheap clean energy, are financing attacks on pro–clean energy policies, in an effort to delay the growth of a market competitor.”

For an article on solarenergy.net last month, Scott Thill interviewed EPI executive director Gabe Eisner about the progress — or lack thereof — of energy anachronisms in clean energy politics: read more>>>

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