Archives for February, 2014

Comments Off on New Fuel Cell Project Aims to Make Port of Honolulu Greener

Clean hydrogen power will soon be arriving at the Port of Honolulu in Hawaii, in a project that’s expected to help lower emissions and reduce energy consumption. Early next year, specially designed shipping containers powered by fuel cells and hydrogen will be used to keep refrigerated containers cool while they’re shipped on barges from island…

Last year President Obama launched Power Africa, an initiative to double access to power in sub-Saharan Africa, where more than two-thirds of the population is without electricity.  In a parallel move, the House Foreign Affairs Committee leadership introduced the Electrify Africa Act to encourage access to electricity in sub-Saharan Africa.  Since then, there has been…

Comments Off on Obama Administration Grade on Coal Ash: Failing

Yes, failing … just like the coal ash ponds along the Dan River. What Put the Stuff on the Map Despite being a political football [pdf] that had been tossed around Capitol Hill, the coal industry and EPA headquarters throughout the ‘90s and early aughts, coal ash was rarely a topic of dinner conversation around most American supper tables I suspect.…

In his call Tuesday for boosting the fuel economy of heavy-duty trucks, President Barack Obama is taking aim at one of the world’s fastest growing engines of oil demand and greenhouse gas emissions. But one of the most popular ideas for reducing oil demand in trucking—switching to natural gas—may not help on climate change. A…

Renewables are making headway in Europe and bringing a low-carbon electricity system to the forefront. Renewables were 69 percent of new capacity added in 2012 in Europe and 49 percent in the United States. Not surprisingly, this threatens utilities unwilling to let go of outmoded business models and fossil-fuel generation. Laments for Europe’s money-losing electric…

Comments Off on Methane Emissions Far Worse Than U.S. Estimates, But Study Concludes Natural Gas Still Better Than Coal

Emissions of the potent heat-trapping gas, methane, the main component of natural gas, are likely 50 percent higher than U.S. government has estimated in its official greenhouse gas inventory, says a new study that is the most comprehensive effort yet to assess the problem. But the team of scientists, after reviewing more than 200 earlier…

Before the special ventilation system is installed, the solar water heaters added, and the insulated windows are fitted at a new set of super-efficient homes in Washington, D.C., the foundation must be laid and the wooden bones erected. Last month, several of us from National Geographic arrived to help do part of that work as…

They came, they built super-efficient vehicles, gained friends and conquered. All 105 student teams from 15 nations participating in this year’s Shell* Eco-marathon Asia are going back to their home countries with a feeling of fulfillment and pride. But winners of the four-day race for fuel-efficiency—from Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore—were in an even more festive…

Comments Off on On Track to Succeed With Efficient “Girl Power”

This year’s Shell Eco-marathon Asia saw the first and only all-female team vying for the top prize. The PLM Alpha 2 team is from Pusat Latihan Mekanik (Mechanical Training Center) in the small country of Brunei, located on the island of Borneo in southeast Asia.  Their F1-inspired prototype vehicle runs on battery-electric-power. (Related: “In Manila, Students…

Comments Off on In Manila, Students Race for Fuel Efficiency at Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2014

More than 100 futuristic vehicles built by students from Asia and the Middle East are competing this weekend on the streets of Philippine capital of Manila in a race for fuel efficiency. In a nation that has had more than its share of woe over the past year, with difficult recovery efforts continuing in the…