Three groups of researchers are now reporting evidence of large plumes of oil far below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico. This growing proof that an unknown quantity of oil from the ruptured Deepwater Horizon rig is now accumulating in deeper waters of the gulf comes after BP chief executive Tony Hayward said his company found “no evidence” of such plumes. Hayward also maintained that oil is lighter than water and thus will float to the top of the gulf. (more…)
Frontenac County, north of Kingston, Ontario, has launched a new Green Energy Task Force in order to “provide opportunities to citizens, farmers, businesses, and local governments of Frontenac County to be involved in and invest in the green economy, particularly through the development of community energy projects.” Councillors from each of the Frontenac townships will sit on the newly created task force, but the county will also seek citizen appointees with specific expertise in the solar and wind industries. (more…)
Comprehensive federal environmental regulation does not come easily. First, there is the difficulty of crafting scientific regulations. Then there are the entrenched interests to be combated, both in the private sector, and with the states and local governments who may have had authority prior to federal regulation. Compounding these issues is the high cost of regulation and enforcement itself. Criticisms abound from the right–too much regulation–and the left–too little. (more…)
A couple of weeks ago, scientists from the J. Craig Venters Institute (JCVI) announced that they had created the first organism with a synthetic genome. President of the institute Craig Venters sees this as the first major step towards creating synthetic organisms that will produce anything from cheap medicines to advanced biofuels.
This synthetic organism, a bacterium, contained a complete genome that had been created by combining thousands and thousands of Mycoplasma mycoides gene base sequences in several stages. (more…)
Jonathan Hiskes recent Grist post is an excellent exploration of a schism in the environmental community over the long awaited American Power Act i.e. the Kerry/Lieberman and one time Graham bill. Earlier in May, I took a day off from my day job, put on my private citizen hat and joined the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in Washington, DC for a day of lobbying in support of the bill. (more…)
On the heels of 694 recently approved renewable energy projects in the province, Ontario Solar Academy (OSA) has established itself a new 8,000 square foot facility in Vaughan, a city just north of Toronto. The move allows OSA to run three times as many training classes every month – an expansion deemed increasingly necessary due to capacity constraints and renewed interest in green careers across the province.
Since its launch earlier this year, OSA has graduated over 75 alumni, with another 27 slated for May. The Academy’s 5-day solar training courses have consistently sold out in advance. David Gower, Associate Director of OSA, explains, “To ensure our students master the necessary installation and safety principles, we must keep class sizes small. The only way to meet demand is to expand the number of solar courses we offer.”
Now that it has passed the House of Representatives with flying colors (246 to 161), we are this close to making Home Star a reality. This is the plan, supported on both sides of the aisle, which would give United States homeowners rebates for energy efficiency improvements and cut energy consumption. Most importantly, Home Star will put many of the country’s construction folks and blue-collar wage earners back to work, so let’s get it passed in the Senate and on President Obama’s desk already!
The bill has unique bi-partisan support and is backed by one of the largest coalitions to hit Washington in years. In just a few months, the Home Star Coalition has signed more than 1,300 members. Supporters come from labor unions, the Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers, contractors, retailers, utilities and regulators, to name a few groups. (more…)
It is that time of year again, the sun is shining and solar panels are soaking it up. And Grid Alternatives’ Solarthon on July 31st in the Bay Area is proving to be bigger and better than ever. Solarthon is a solar block party and fundraiser where GRID Alternatives Bay Area will be leading individual and corporate work crews to install solar panels for several low-income families in one neighborhood in one day. (more…)
After watching the video below from an old professor from college, I found myself with the sudden urge to blog on the topic of money,cash flow, and sustainability.
The video demonstrates how people feel about cash and the different types of cash. Needless to say, an interesting topic for everyone because we all have it and usually want more of it. But how does cash relate to sustainability and the decisions that are affecting our planet, our lives and our species.
My hypothesis: Feelings of cash correlate directly with assumptions of sustainability investments. (more…)