Tag Archives: renewable energy

Renewable Home Energy.org Educates and Connects

Renewable energy – if you haven’t noticed, it’s the buzz around the world. We are using an alarming amount of fossil fuels every day; fossil fuels that won’t last forever. Some experts say we will be known as the generation that destroys the earth unless we change our energy behavior now.

“Renewable Energy makes sense from both a financial and a green responsibility” says Todd Sachs, co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer of www.renewablehomeenergy.org.

“We are committed in educating consumers on how to turn their homes into Renewable Energy Homes. We help by connecting consumers with qualified installers throughout the United States so they can save money on their fast rising energy bills, create more value in their home investment, and join together in reducing dependency on fossil fuels; together reducing the carbon footprint.” Sachs says.

A recent press release from the whitehouse.gov states the following:
“President Obama is committed to an “all-of-the-above” approach that develops all American energy sources in a safe and responsible way and builds a clean and secure energy future. That’s why the President’s plan:

Challenges Americans to double renewable electricity generation again by 2020. In order to double generation from wind, solar, and geothermal sources by 2020, relative to 2012 levels, the President called on Congress to make the renewable energy Production Tax Credit permanent and refundable, which will provide incentive and certainty for investments in new clean energy. Instead of continuing century-old subsidies to oil companies, the President believes that we need to invest in the energy of the future. During the President’s first term, clean energy tax incentives attracted billions of dollars in private investment in almost 50,000 clean energy projects, creating tens of thousands of jobs. Permanent extension keeps the momentum building, while creating new jobs in clean energy.”

Once Americans realize just how possible it is to remove their home from the grid completely and/or partially, many will turn to clean energy sources such as wind, solar and geothermal for home energy systems. Renewable Home Energy (www.renewablehomeenergy.org) just launched last week and is serving-up a great way to connect homeowners with qualified renewable energy installers throughout the entire United States.

Renewable Home Energy is committed to working with local governments, manufactures and installers to help develop affordable ways for consumers to save money with Renewable Energy to remove them from the grid and reduce the carbon footprint by reducing the usage of the finite fossil fuels.

The process is easy. Just click on www.renewablehomeenergy.org and learn about Renewable Energy for your home. You can also complete a form to connect with a Renewable Energy Installer. You will be contacted by qualified installers in your immediate area. They will review your current energy consumption and suggest the best Renewable Energy alternatives for your home.

There are great tax incentives for you to install renewable energy in your home, and great finance options with 4% or less interest rates for up to 10 year terms for qualified buyers.

Via EPR Network
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The National Trust Launches Legal Challenge Against Landmark Wind Farm Decision

The National Trust, English Heritage and East Northamptonshire Council have made a joint legal challenge against planning permission for a wind farm that would be built within one mile of a Grade I listed building and registered park and garden.

The proposal would see four 126.5m wind turbines built within the setting of the Lyveden New Bield site, a place described by the Planning Inspector who granted approval for the plans as “probably the finest example of an Elizabethan garden [with a] cultural value of national if not international significance”.

After planning permission was initially refused by the local Council, the development was given consent on appeal in March 2012. The three organisations started legal proceedings on 23 April under section 288 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. It is extremely rare for English Heritage and the National Trust to pursue legal action and it is the first time that East Northamptonshire Council has ever taken a case to this level.

Fiona Reynolds, Director-General of the National Trust explained the decision to take the matter to the Administrative Court: “We fully support renewable energy and have made our own commitment to halve our dependence on fossil fuels by 2020. We have also backed a number of wind proposals where scale and setting have been considered appropriate.

“However, the decision to allow a development of this size so close to one of the country’s most treasured historic places is both damaging to Lyveden New Bield and could have serious implications for other heritage sites across the UK.”

As a Grade I listed building, registered park and garden and scheduled ancient monument, Lyveden New Bield’s unfinished Elizabethan lodge and gardens have the highest heritage designation possible. The wind turbines would be prominent, modern structures in a landscape that still evokes the character of Lyveden New Bield’s historic Rockingham Forest surroundings. The turbines would be visible from almost everywhere on the property.

Simon Thurley, Chief Executive of English Heritage, said: “Our challenge to his decision is not simply about the balance of professional judgement between heritage and renewable energy. The Inspector did not adequately take into account the contribution that Lyveden New Bield’s historic and rural surroundings make to its immense significance.”

Leader of East Northamptonshire Council, Steven North added: “It is regrettable that it has come to this, but we fully support this legal challenge and will be working closely with the National Trust and English Heritage to protect this heritage site.”

Via EPR Network
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How One Dollar Lights Up Africa

In the beginning there was light for all – and a little later there was electric light for, well, only some of us: 1.5 billion people still live in darkness. Dutch startup Off-Grid Solutions makes an end to developing countries’ killing kerosene dependency. They want their high-tech, low-cost WakaWaka solar LED lamp to light up Africa ‘like a Christmas tree’.

Via Kickstarter.com, the general public is now enthusiastically pre-ordering WakaWaka´s for 35 dollars each. The minimal support to contribute to their mission is one dollar. Thanks to this innovative way of crowdfunding, WakaWaka grows at the speed of light .And with it, the dream of providing all Africans with a sustainable light solution becomes more real by the minute.

1.5 billion people live off-grid. They depend on kerosene fuel for their basic lighting needs. Annually millions of children suffer severe burns from accidents with kerosene lamps. The toxic fumes cause even more health problems. World Bank reports that each day 780 million women and children inhale the equivalent of two packs of cigarettes as a result of indoor air pollution.

Fuels for lighting take up to 20% of income of people who try to survive on less than $2 a day. This way, the poor stay poor. But there is light at the end of the tunnel: WakaWaka solar LED light.

The WakaWaka (‘Shine Bright’ in Swahili) solar lamp uses the latest in patented solar technology developed by Intivation, allowing for superior charging in any weather conditions.

Each day of free solar charging gives 16 hours of decent reading light. It has different light intensities and fits on a bottle, stimulating recycling and opening up opportunities for joint promotions. Innovative distribution methods will reach even the most remote rural areas. Various accessories (cell phone chargers, radios, etc.) are already in development, which will further enhance livelihood and help people get out of poverty.

Co-founder Camille van Gestel: ‘I genuinely believe that if you can make a difference, you must. I have never done anything with so much passion. The support and inquiries we are receiving for WakaWaka from all over the world are as stimulating as they are heartwarming. We are doing the right thing.’

Let’s hope this new bright light spreads fast, for all and everybody. LED there be light.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/229055906/wakawaka-is-the-coolest-solar-led-light

http://www.wakawakalight.com

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About Off-Grid Solutions
Founded in 2011 by 4 partners: sustainable entrepreneur, inspirator and guru Maurits Groen, hands-on change maker and entrepreneur Camille van Gestel, carbon emissions consultants Do-Inc, experts emerging markets and finally Paul Naastepad seasoned executive in clean tech industry.

Via EPR Network
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Children Teaching Grown-Ups A Lesson Or Two About Green Issues

Children are resorting to “green pester power”, pushing their parents to act more sustainably – and their efforts are paying off, according to a new report published yesterday (20 September).

Half of parents say they struggle to answer their children’s questions about green issues – more than half for instance, incorrectly put the blame for climate change on carbon monoxide.

But six in ten say their children are persuading them to be greener, with recycling, conserving water and leaving the car at home among the things their offspring are asking them to do most often…and when they’re pressured, 95 per cent of them change their behaviour as a result.

The study is published by The Co-operative, to mark the official launch of its Green Schools Revolution (GSR) educational programme, which forms part of its groundbreaking Ethical Plan. The programme will meet the needs of information-hungry children, who rate green issues a close third in terms of learning priorities just behind Maths and English.

More than four in five parents believe their children learn more about the environment at school than they did – two in five say they were taught nothing about the issues at all.

The Co-operative Group says it has been “overwhelmed” by the pre-registration demand for the programme’s range of teaching materials from more than 2,500 primary and secondary schools across the UK, caring for over one million children.

Paul Monaghan, Head of Sustainability at the Co-operative Group said: “We are lucky that our youngsters have such a tremendous appetite to learn more about green issues and make a difference.

“Through our Green Schools Revolution programme, we hope to do our bit to help the thousands of switched on teachers who want to ensure the next generation are better equipped for the challenge of building a more sustainable world. However, parents aren’t off the hook – clearly they need extra homework and the programme will put children in a good position to teach them.”

Farmer and television presenter, Jimmy Doherty is launching the programme with the help of schoolchildren at a London primary school. He said: “As a parent, a farmer, and an enthusiastic advocate of sustainable living, I think it is vitally important to educate our children about green issues from an early age. I’ve been passionate about the environment since I was a teenager, but back then there was little information around to inspire others to change, so I’m delighted to see that The Co-operative is launching its Green Schools Revolution programme, which offers so much to encourage children to consider their environmental impact as second nature.”

From today, all GSR schools across the country will have access to a wide range of free cross-curricular classroom resources and activities through www.greenschools.coop, giving young people and teachers the tools to inspire change in their schools, homes and local communities.

The Co-operative is offering schools free fun and educational visits to its own wind farm to see renewable energy in action and to seven Co-operative Farms to see firsthand how food grows and how to cook it. Schools will be able to take advantage of free high visibility jackets to help set up “walking buses” for pupils, helping both schools and parents to take practical action to cut their carbon emissions.

Via EPR Network
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Algae Collection Technology, LLC Moves a Major Step Closer to Estuary Clean-up and Alternative Energy

Algae Collection Technology, LLC (ACT) conducted a macro algae harvesting demonstration for Florida permitting officials, in the Indian River Lagoon, just east of downtown Melbourne. The successful demonstration was a major step towards securing harvesting permits that will allow the company to remove excess harmful algae f r o m estuaries, and then work with their partners to convert the algae into commercially beneficial products such as alternative energy sources.

Algae Collection Technology, LLC Moves a Major Step Closer to Estuary Clean-up and Alternative Energy

ACT’s goal with the demonstration was to show that the environmental impact appeared negligible so a permit could be issued to do a research pilot program. The research f r o m the pilot will measure the amount of harmful nutrients removed f r o m the estuary when excess algae is removed, the impact and volume of any by-catch, the improvement of water quality by avoiding anoxic conditions created by decomposing algae, the impact on sea grasses and juvenile species, and the potential improvement in water clarity/quality. It will also allow ACT’s partners to explore the yield f r o m commercial uses of the product. For example, Global Renewable Energy Resources (GRES) intends to conduct extensive research on the algae harvested in the pilot period to determine if newly invented enzymes can break down the algae into a high yield energy source.

In attendance at the demonstration were representatives f r o m the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), the St. John’s River Water Management District, The Florida Fish and Wildlife Department, and Brevard County. Viewers saw the exact harvesting equipment that will be used during the research pilot, and were briefed by Clark Giangarra, the President of ACT on how the equipment was designed, and the objectives of the harvesting. As Mr. Giangarra indicated, removing the algae has“two major ecological values. First, the algae acts like a sponge for run-off nutrients like phosphorous and nitrogen (fertilizers). When you remove algae, it takes the nutrients with it and keeps the estuary f r o m simply adding more and more nutrients to the system. Second, this algae grows into huge deposits that are often several feet thick. If they are not removed, those algae deposits die and create anoxic conditions where all surrounding sea life dies.” Mr. Giangarra went on to say that the cleanup process that removes the algae can be expensive, but interest f r o m potential partners such as GRES has convinced him that the commercial value of the product will ensure that the estuary cleanup is financed by those participating partners at no governmental expense.

The two hour demonstration featured ACT’s harvesting and wash-down system as algae was collected. The harvesting equipment is a simple hand-operated collection device that skims over the bottom. The wash-down system was designed to return by-catch to the estuary, thereby minimizing by-catch impact. As the harvesting was conducted, representatives f r o m Fish and Wildlife and DEP actually sifted through the algae noting and counting any species. In addition, divers f r o m DEP followed the harvesting equipment to observe and note any potential impact on the estuary bottom.

At the conclusion of the demonstration, an out-briefing was conducted to voice any concerns and observations, and to clarify the objectives and processes of the pilot research project. In the end, all parties had a clear understanding, and the permitting authorities agreed to allow ACT to move forward with the application for the research pilot permitting process.

“This was a huge step forward, because if we were not able to convince all parties that we apparently had minimal ecological impact, and that the pilot research project will provide extensive documentation, then they wouldn’t have even let us proceed with a permit application” said Clark Giangarra. Today, we are closer than ever to cleaning up a harmful nuisance and creating alternative renewable energy than ever before thanks to the Florida permitting officials.

Via EPR Network
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