EarthTechling

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EarthTechling is an online consumer publication focused on all things green technology. From clean energy and electric vehicles to green gadgets and green buildings, our passionate team and readers weigh in on the latest green news, services, and products. We cover advancements in green technology occurring around the world from our home base here in Portland, Oregon, and have been doing so since late summer of 2009.

It’s a slow turn, but the Obama administration seems to be steering the wind power industry toward killing fewer birds. The latest sign: For the first time, a wind power company is paying for neglecting to do what it could to protect birds, including golden eagles. (See related blog post: “Federal Study Highlights Spike in Eagle…

Comments Off on Solar Researchers Dig Deeper Into Snow Issue

Our recent story on a net-zero town hall in Upstate New York prompted a question about what impact snow might have on the solar panels that are installed, at a slight angle, on the building’s flat roof. This is a darn good question – and it turns out the scientists at Michigan Technological University’s Keweenaw Research Center…

What a difference three years can make. In 2010, First Wind tried to do an initial public offering, but never made it out of the gate. Last Friday, in a sign of wind power’s now-entrenched place on the U.S. energy landscape, Pattern Energy Group had a successful IPO, raising $352 million. Of course, there was more that was different about…

Comments Off on For Maui, More Wind Means Reduced Electric Bills

How does a utility increase the amount of wind energy powering homes without putting up more turbines? You make sure every watt generated – or close to it – makes its way onto the grid. (See related quiz: “What You Don’t Know About Wind Energy.”) That’s what Maui Electric Company said [PDF] it’s doing, announcing changes in…

Would you be more likely to buy a plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) such as a Chevy Volt or Nissan Leaf if you knew the power which fueled it came from a more renewable source? If so, you wouldn’t be alone, according to a new study which took a look at the green car buying habits of American drivers. (See related post:…

Comments Off on Study Says: Hey, You, Get Onto the Cloud (It Saves Energy)

Information technology managers take note: The cloud can be your friend. U.S. government researchers built a model to test the energy cost of running common business applications using centralized data centers instead of local systems. Turned out the cloud’s energy efficiency advantages on a nationwide basis were huge – up to 87 percent, or around 23 billion…

We’ve known for months that 2012 was a huge year for wind power in the United States, so the headline from the wind industry’s big annual report released last week – that wind power grew by 28 percent – was a little stale. But poring over the 108-page document – provided to us on a…

The Scottish government this week approved plans to build an 11-turbine testing ground a few kilometers off the northeast coast of Scotland, rebuffing American celebrity real estate developer Donald Trump, who railed that the array will spoil the views from his seaside golf resort.

Comments Off on Is U.S. Energy Use Distributed as Unequally as Our Wealth?

If you’re active on social media, you may have noticed a viral video about U.S. wealth inequality making the rounds. In just a few short days this video was watched and shared by millions, raising awareness about the difference between our perception of how wealth is divided and the reality. According to a report from energy start-up Opower, however,…

There’s good news in the long-running controversy about wind power and birds. A study of the notorious wind turbines in California’s Altamont Pass suggests that efforts to reduce the number of bird deaths from the spinning blades are succeeding.