Articles With "alternative energy" Tag

Thoughts on The Clean Tech Revolution (Updated)

Thecleantechrevolution So I received from HarperCollins a copy of Ron Pernick + Clint Wilder’s latest book called The Clean Tech Revolution.  I’m a big enthusiast of renewable technology because it has the potential to change the world of real estate and green living.  Preliminarily, let me say that this book is an incredible read.  Seriously.  It’s smart and approachable.  To get an idea of the breadth of the book, here are the chapter subjects:  solar energy, wind power, biofuels and biomaterials, green buildings, personal transportation, smart grid, mobile technologies, water filtration, creating your own Silicon Valley, and clean-tech marketing.  And the book is geared towards individuals, investors, corporations, and governments alike. 

The authors are Clean Edge guys and they know what they’re talking about.  The research put into each topic is unbelievably thorough.  The Clean Tech Revolution is not some chump book by someone that just recently jumped on the green bandwagon (not that there’s anything wrong with that).  The authors talk about the tipping point of green brought about by six C’s–cost, capital, competition, China, consumers, and climate.  These six things have come together to make clean tech something of a revolution that will occur over the next 20, 30, 40 years plus.  It’s pretty exciting.  In each of the chapter categories mentioned above, the authors identify several companies to watch.  For instance, the authors say we should keep an eye on the following companies in the ‘green building’ chapter:  Aspen Aerogels, Clarum Homes, Cree, The Durst Organization, Interface Engineering, Ortech, PanaHome, Rinnai, Turner Construction, Wal-Mart Stores

Update:BusinessWeek published an extensive review over the weekend saying, in part: "But what sets Pernick and Wilder’s book apart is its focus on the business benefits of going green, from money saved by building eco-friendly corporate headquarters and lowering heating and cooling bills, to money earned by startups committed to creating clean technologies. Other books, magazines, and Web sites tend to include clean-tech and green business within a spectrum of other lifestyle, political, environmental, or design topics."

I’m not going to give away too much, but I’m really impressed with this book.  Actually, I’ve got two people in mind that I want to pass a copy to, and they’re not getting mine. 

Winds of Change: Bingaman-Reid Renewable Portfolio Standard Energy Amendment

Powerofwind

For those that follow the political realm, you may be aware that the Senate is considering a huge energy bill over the next 24 hours.  Some of the details of this bill were the subject of an opinion article in the LA Times today.  There are pros and cons of the bill affecting all sorts of energy concerns such as renewable fuels, coal-to-liquid technology, and automobile efficiency standards.  Up for consideration is the Bingaman-Reid renewable portfolio standard (RPS) requiring the nation to get 15% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020.  An RPS requires electric utilities to include a specific percentage of clean, renewable energy in their generation portfolios, or to purchase renewable energy credits from others.  If you want to help see that the Bingaman-Reid RPS is supported, feel free to use the Power of Wind website to let your Senator know.

S2: The Top Ten Green Skyscrapers (EcoGeek)

Greenscrapers

Every Sunday, Jetson Green features a different green skyscraper, and flat out, I’m amazed at the innovation architects and engineers are putting into these towering eco-phallics.  So, in the spirit of looking at what we can do with modern technology, I thought it would be fun to highlight an article called "Uber-Eco-Towers: The Top Ten Green Skyscrapers," by Jon Schroeder for EcoGeek.  Building on the hype from the recent sustainable skyscraper design conference (link), Jon has a list of what he’s determined to be the top ten green towers.  Here they are from top to bottom:

  1. The Bahrain World Trade Center Towers
  2. The Pearl River Tower
  3. Bank of America Tower – One Bryant Park
  4. The Lighthouse Tower
  5. The CIS Tower
  6. The Hearst Tower
  7. The Burj al-Taqa – Energy Tower
  8. Waugh Thistleton Residential Tower
  9. 340 on the Park
  10. The Urban Cactus

Looks like 7 of the 10 that made Jon’s cut have been featured previously on Jetson Green.  I’ll make sure to write an article on the other 3 buildings detailing their accomplishments.  Nice list EcoGeek…

::"S2" is short for "Skyscraper Sunday," a weekly article on green skyscrapers posted every Sunday::

Smart-Home Tech, Big Houses, Wind Energy White Paper, + Peddling Smart Growth (WIR)

Week in Review
  1. Wired to Sell – Smart-home technology is becoming increasingly available with a variety of conservation and convenience features. 
  2. Why Big Houses? The average, new American home is 2,400 sf; experts weigh in on America’s fascination with bigger is better. 
  3. Wind Energy White Paper "In Defense of Wind," by Dallas attorney Trey Cox outlines concerns about wind energy industry’s rapid and unregulated growth. 
  4. Peddling Smart Growth – call your project "smart" – even when it isn’t – and get millions in public funds. 

WINDPOWER 2007: AWEA Flickr Pool and YouTube Channel

Skystream 3.7
Southwest Windpower

Right now, the world’s largest wind energy conference and exhibition, called WINDPOWER 2007, is going on.  For those of you that can’t attend, here’s a link to the AWEA YouTube Channel and the AWEA Flickr Pool.  Good stuff.  Pictured above is the Skystream 3.7.  I’m a big believer in wind technology, especially small wind technology because it has the potential to power our lives on a renewable basis.  Think about the powerful combo of a plug-in hybrid car + home with solar panels + yard with small wind + thermal energy storage.  Here’s what happens.  During the night, you charge your car at home.  Then you drive to work.  At work, you charge your car again with solar/wind power.  The hybrid makes it happen anywhere in the middle.  We need to start mashing up renewable technology in a smart way.  Microgeneration.  Decentralization.  WINDPOWER 2007 is a big part of making this happen. 

Good Links:
++The Age of Windustry [EcoGeek]
++Inside WINDPOWER 2007, Part I [Green Options]

S2: Hypergreen by Jacques Ferrier (+ Podcast)

Skyline

Grid_skin

Recently, Paris-based architect Jacques Ferrier unleashed his "Hypergreen" mixed-use skyscraper concept, which was submitted for a project competition in Paris.  Hypergreen incorporates a curving lattice facade made of ultra-high-performance concrete that acts as the building’s primary structural system.  It has the look of steel, almost resembling some of Foster’s designs such as Hearst Tower or 30 St Mary Axe.  Measuring 246 meters in height, Hypergreen has the following green features:  geothermal heat pumps, photovoltaic panels, integrated wind turbines, earth cooling tubes, vegetated sky lobbies, a roof garden, rainwater recovery system, and flexible and adaptable floor plates.  The exoskeleton reduces the number of columns that make for odd floor plates. 

Good Links:
++Jacques Ferrier Architecture [Official Website]
++Green Skyscraper Will Have ‘Steel-like’ Concrete Skin [BD+C - PODCAST]

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