Posts Tagged ‘environment’

Doubling public transport by 2025 to save $ 140 billion

13/04/2011 Comments off

This is a photo of a Dubai Bus (Route X25), si...

Image via Wikipedia

Public transport market share must double by 2025 to save $140 billion from energy consumption while reducing greenhouse gas emissions as well, a report from a global network of public transport officials showed.

The International Association of Public Transport (U.I.T.P.), based on well-documented urban economic and technological development projections and a partnership with the International Energy Agency, compared the impacts and benefits of the expected business scenario with that of public transport times two, or PTx2, in 2025.

The group presented the PTx2 program during the 59th World Congress in Dubai which started April 10 and will end on April 14.

The expected scenario is projected according to current trends. Scenarios were evaluated under the projections on how the cities will evolve until that year compared to 2005. Read more…

Nuclear Industry Shows Their True Green Cards

11/04/2011 Comments off


The fallout from Fukushima has had ripple effects in the nuclear industry across the world, but nowhere outside of Japan has the impact been so significant as in Germany. Here the ensuing frenzy has resulted in a moratorium on nuclear power plant permit extensions and the closure of seven nuclear plants. Now the nuclear power plant operators have fired a shot across the political bow: they have stopped supporting green energy.

Why is the German nuclear industry investing in green power? And why are they stopping now? The story starts in 2005, when the German conservative party, the CDU, promised to overturn a law by the socialist-green coalition to close down all nuclear power by 2021. The CDU won the national elections. To calm public protest, they negotiated a deal with the nuclear industry: The nuclear operators would invest a good percentage of the windfall profits from extending nuclear power plant permits in funds for the expansion of alternative energy. The nuclear investment was expected to boost green energy funds by €16.9 billion (US$24 billion) in total, approximately 300 million euros in 2011-2012 alone.

On Saturday 9 April, all nuclear operators — RWE, EnBW, Vattenfall and E.ON — announced they were stopping payments into the green energy fund. It is particularly interesting that the nuclear operators are not keeping a low profile during what was announced as merely a three month moratorium to review the planned permit extensions. On the one hand, the nuclear operators are within their rights. The windfall profits expected from permit extensions (subject to extensive safety reviews) have turned into sudden, unanticipated red ink as power plants have undergone politically ordered shutdowns. Thus, the monies earmarked for the green energy fund do not exist. (It should be noted that the nuclear operators intend to put the agreed payments into a collateral account until resolution of the issue.)

But the strategy may backfire. The peremptory and unilateral cessation of payments makes the investment fund look more like a political bargaining chip than ever. What was arguably a reasonable political strategy to use nuclear plants as a bridge to greener energy now lays in tattered disarray, exposed as politics pure rather than logical risk management and strategic energy planning.

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Global energy ministers finalize plan on carbon capture and storage use

10/04/2011 Comments off

The Nesjavellir Geothermal Power Plant in Þing...

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Energy ministers have agreed to speed up worldwide deployment of carbon capture and storage technology as the three-day global ministerial meeting on clean energy has come to its conclusion.

The Clean Energy Ministerial gathers ministers from around the globe to discuss policies and programs that advance clean energy technology, which in turn improves energy efficiency, expands access to and enhances supply of clean energy.

“There can be no solution to climate change and energy security globally without carbon capture and storage,” stressed British energy and climate change secretary Chris Huhne during the meeting in Abu Dhabi.

Carbon capture and storage technology captures carbon dioxide from point power plants and other industrial facilities, and injects it deep underground.

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Investing in Carbon Offsets

13/03/2011 Comments off

In recent years, the world of real estate has focused on sustainability, and rightfully so. According to the U.S. Green Building Council, buildings account for 40% of primary energy use in the United States, as well as 39% of its carbon dioxide emissions.

These numbers have played a part in the industry’s drive toward green building. Owners are no longer content with traditional energy use and the negative impact that it has. Building owners have identified tangible returns to going green, including increased marketability, decreased operating costs, and the halo effect. These returns create an opportunity for carbon offset investments.

A carbon offset is a credit or certificate that represents the reduction of one ton of carbon dioxide emissions. These offsets are created by projects that reduce carbon dioxide and have the reduction verified by a qualified third party. These carbon reduction projects then sell their offsets to individuals and companies that wish to mitigate their environmental impact. In most cases, participation in the carbon offset market is voluntary. These offsets are most commonly purchased to earn LEED points for a building or to get media recognition for a company’s green efforts.

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DOW Jones by STUDIOS Architecture

13/03/2011 Comments off

Credit: Albert Vecerka/Esto

In 2007, Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. acquired Dow Jones, publisher of the Wall Street Journal. Within months, the announcement was made that the Wall Street Journal offices would be moving from their long-time home in the financial district to a building in midtown Manhattan, where News Corp. was based. The firm STUDIOS Architecture was hired to design the new space, which occupied 240,000 sq. ft. (22,297 m2) across five floors of a building located on the Avenue of the Americas.

With the merger of the two newsgroups, three teams were brought together: online, print, and wire services. Uniting these groups functionally, culturally, and aesthetically was the overall ambition of the design. According to the STUDIOS website, “STUDIOS was hired to meld the groups together, to facilitate faster and more efficient communication among the leaders through the planning and design of the space. A significant cultural change took place, as a new transparent and non-hierarchical environment would be created.”

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New Cement is Carbon Negative

21/02/2011 Comments off


Cement is one of the most significant single sources for carbon emissions, due to the intense energy required for its production and the volumes of it that are produced annually, as well as from material itself, but an alternative is now available. It doesn’t just reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emitted, it actually binds more CO2 than is emitted from its production, which makes its production carbon negative.

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