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November 30 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • Climate change takes center stage Monday as a global conversation begins in Paris. But it’s not just international politicians who will lead discussions. US cities like Boulder will have representatives there to share their best practices. Now the city’s strategy includes a job many have never heard of: Chief Resilience Officer. [Colorado Public Radio]
Greg Guibert, Boulder's first ever Chief Resilience Officer. More US cities are using CROs to strategize for climate change and other natural disaster challenges.

Greg Guibert, Boulder’s first ever Chief Resilience Officer. More US cities are using CROs to strategize for climate change and other natural disaster challenges.

  • With world leaders converging in Paris today for the start of the long-awaited COP21 climate talks, The Climate Group’s International Communications Director, Eduardo Goncalves, outlines a number of reasons why we should be optimistic about both a successful outcome, and crucially, the months and years that will follow. [The Climate Group]
  • Organisers have said that at least 50,000 people marched through London in what was the UK’s largest ever demonstration for action against climate change. In the run up to the COP21, activists have been marching in cities around the world, and over 2,000 marches are said to have taken place since Friday. [Yahoo News UK]
  • The largest solar farm in the Philippines will start supplying energy to Meralco on December 4. The new 11-hectare solar power plant has 32,692 solar panels that can generate 8.6 MW, meaning it can supply 61,920 households. The site had been a fish pond, but it ran dry, prompting its former owners to sell the property. [Manila Bulletin]
  • President Barack Obama said Sunday that American leadership was helping make gains in the global fight against climate change as he tried to reassure world leaders assembling for a historic conference in Paris that the United States can deliver on its own commitments. Obama is joining other world leaders at COP21. [Albuquerque Journal]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

Climate Action on November 30:

Grassroots Activists to Deliver Thousands of Calls  for  Bold Climate Action

Montpelier, VT – On Monday, November 30, representatives of the Energy Independent Vermont coalition will deliver thousands of postcards and petitions to legislators at the Statehouse demanding that they “tackle global warming and save Vermonters money by reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.”

Vermonters in every House and Senate district in the state are calling on their elected representatives to take bold climate action “by putting a price on carbon pollution and creating an Energy Independence Fund.”  The Fund will help Vermonters save money, reduce dependence on fossil fuels and create jobs.

What: Energy Independent Vermont petition delivery event

When: Monday, November 30, 12:30 PM

Where: Vermont Statehouse steps (Cedar Creek Room if inclement weather)

Speakers: Representatives of the business community, low-income advocates, religious leaders, town energy committees, and community organizers

Visuals:  Many stacks of postcards 6’ high

Additional materials – including a policy overview and in-depth economic analysis – will be available to media in attendance.

The Energy Independent Vermont tax reform plan will create polluter-funded investments to save Vermonters money on our fuel bills and reduce taxes on Vermonters and businesses.  With more money in our pockets, Vermonters will spend more at local businesses – growing our economy and creating new jobs.

November 29 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • The California birthplace of a machine that could bring clean power to the developing world and knock a tiny dent in global warming looks like a junkyard. But the Power Pallet, which generates electricity from corn cobs, wood chips, coconut shells and other kinds of cheap, dense biomass is “carbon negative.” [San Francisco Chronicle]
Tom Price, director of strategic initiatives, looks over a PP20 Power Pallet while giving a tour at All Power Labs. Photo: Lea Suzuki, The Chronicle

Tom Price, director of strategic initiatives, looks over a PP20 Power Pallet while giving a tour at All Power Labs. Photo: Lea Suzuki, The Chronicle

  • New onshore wind turbines are coming to market. Senvion’s 3.4M140 is a 3.4-MW example with 140 meter rotor blades. The turbine should be able to generate 12.2 GWh of electricity annually in locations with wind velocities of 6.5 meters per second at hub height, making capacity factor around 41%. []
  • When forest fires roared through Siberia this summer, so vast that the smoke blocked vast Lake Baikal from satellite view, Russian officials blamed the blazes on arsonists and disorganized fire crews. There may be another culprit: global warming, but Russia has little interest in reducing greenhouse gases. [The Journal]
  • Arizona could meet the requirements of the Clean Power Plan with large-scale solar and wind projects already under review in the state, according to a recent analysis released by Arizona State University’s Energy Policy Innovation Council and the Sonoran Institute, a sustainability group based in Tucson. []
  • Australian Environment Minister Greg Hunt said new low-emissions coal power plants were unlikely to be built in Australia, despite experts saying they could help coal remain the dominant global fuel. He expects renewable energy, such as wind and solar, would take up the slack as old coal plant close. [The Australian Financial Review]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.


November 28 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • Rising levels of carbon dioxide in the oceans are changing the makeup of plankton. While the shift in numbers could certainly be fortunate for animals that eat one type with a burgeoning population, researchers are unsure exactly which animals those are. That is worrisome because it shows just how little is known about the ecosystems. [Science Recorder]
Recent research shows that higher levels of carbon dioxide may be leading to a rise in the numbers of tiny phytoplankton known as coccolithophores.

Recent research shows that higher levels of carbon dioxide may be leading to a rise in the numbers of tiny phytoplankton known as coccolithophores.

  • Recently, the US released analysis of the country’s 2014 carbon emissions. It showed that growth in carbon emissions is declining even as economic activity expands. A new report indicates the same held true globally. Even though the global economy expanded by 3% last year, carbon emissions only rose by 0.5%. [Ars Technica]
  • BP’s CEO Bob Dudley talked about climate change and the role oil and gas companies can play in the transition to a low carbon future. BP management believes the best course of action would be for the parties at the UN conference to reach an agreement on carbon pricing, either with taxes or by cap-and-trade. [Business Finance News]
  • With climate negotiators gathering in Paris, calls are intensifying to make all polluters pay a price for carbon dioxide and other planet-warming emissions. Many economists back the approach as a market-friendly way to cut greenhouse gasses. The US Congress is hostile to the idea, but it’s gaining traction elsewhere. [Voice of America]
  • For more than three decades, people from the Marshall islands have moved in the thousands to the landlocked Ozark Mountains for better education, jobs and health care, thanks to an agreement that lets them live and work in the US. The connection makes it an obvious destination for those facing a new threat: global warming. [Fox News]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

November 27 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • Enbridge says it has purchased a 103-MW wind farm under development in West Virginia for about $200 million from EverPower Wind Holdings. The Calgary-based pipeline operator, which has been increasing its stake in the clean energy sector, said it is aiming to have the New Wind Creek project in operation by December 2016. []

11-27 Enbridge west virginia and canada

  • China’s emissions tied directly to burning fossil fuels may rise only 0.24% in 2015, the slowest pace in at least 15 years, according to a Bloomberg New Energy Finance preliminary estimate based on coal consumption data drawn from government customs reports, company production filings and port inventories. [Macau Daily Times]
  • South Australia has committed to a new target of zero net emissions by 2050, the state’s Premier has revealed. The announcement was made following the release of the recommendations of the South Australian Low Carbon Economy Expert Panel. The panel said 100% renewables could be achieved relatively quickly. [RenewEconomy]
  • In a report, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory says, “In just four years, thanks to falling renewable energy technology costs, economic potential has more than tripled.” Economic potential is a metric that quantifies the amount of economically viable renewable generation that is available at a specific location. [pv magazine]
  • Google said it would offset the huge amounts of electricity it needed to run its North Carolina server farm with solar power under a new program that allows corporations to voluntarily pay more for renewable energy. Duke Energy will supply electricity it buys from a new Rutherford County solar farm under a new program. [domain-B]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

November 26 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • German household-scale battery maker Sonnenbatterie will soon provide buyers of the company’s household-scale electricity storage batteries, most of whom also have solar photovoltaic panels mounted on their rooftops, to automatically buy and sell energy from each other directly through a shared online platform. [Deutsche Welle]
German rooftop solar power.

German rooftop solar power.

  • One significant challenge to lithium-ion EV battery technology is coming from the lithium-sulfur field. A lithium-sulfur battery research project at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has had sufficient success that Oak Ridge announced that it has signed an exclusive lithium-sulfur battery agreement with a startup called Solid Power. [CleanTechnica]
  • Stanford researcher Mark Jacobson has analyzed what it would take for each of the 50 states to go fully renewable. Normally, intermittency issues are expected to be handled by fossil fuel power and batteries. But the new analysis suggests we don’t need any of that, and we don’t need biofuels or nuclear, either. [Ars Technica UK]
  • The energy storage market is rapidly becoming one of the most exciting spaces in all of renewables. Two major developments highlight this. First, even that the most dysfunctional of American institutions, the Congress, is getting interested in energy storage. Second, Wall Street is putting money into energy storage. []
  • Developer Cape Wind has urged a US court to dismiss opponents’ appeal of its 468-MW offshore wind project in Nantucket Sound. The appeal is the latest in the plaintiffs “14-year crusade” against the project, which includes more than 30 administrative and court challenges, Cape Wind told a federal Court of Appeals. [reNews]
  • Biodico announced its new facility in California’s San Joaquin Valley. The plant is purportedly the world’s first biofuel production facility operating entirely on renewable heat and power generated on-site. It will go online the first week of December, to produce 20 million gallons of biodiesel fuel each year. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

November 25 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • US-based Envirofit was one of the first social enterprises to provide clean cookstoves, and it’s just recently sold its millionth unit. Rocket stoves are wonders of sustainability. They address dangers to human health posed by open-fire cooking; they also burn very small amounts of wood fuel, with low emissions. [CleanTechnica]
Image credit: Envirofit International via Picasa. CC BY-NC-ND 3.0

Image credit: Envirofit International via Picasa. CC BY-NC-ND 3.0

  • An accelerated transition to renewable energy could limit the global temperature rise to below 2° C, says an International Renewable Energy Agency report. It says if renewable energy accounted for 36% of the world energy mix by 2030, half the emission reductions needed to limit warming to 2° C would already be met. [CleanTechnica]
  • The 300-MW Cestas solar photovoltaic project, located in the Bordeaux region of France, has now been fully connected to the electric grid, according to recent reports. Full grid connection was achieved with the connection of the last 12-MW portion of the project, which has a total of 25 different 12 MW project portions. [CleanTechnica]
  • Alaska is a vast wilderness of natural beauty. But it also holds more coal than all the other US states put together. As world leaders prepare to gather for a major climate change summit, plans to build an open coal mine that would cover 78 sq km (30 sq miles) surrounding a valued Alaskan river could be coming to a head. [BBC]
  • According to the California Air Resources Board, a leak that started October 23 at a Southern California Gas Company well accounted for a quarter of all the methane released by the state since it started. Estimates are that up to 50 metric tons of the potent greenhouse gas leaked into the atmosphere each hour since the leak started. [KCET]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

November 24 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • The EU’s renewable energy requirements are forcing coal-based power plants to use biomass fuel. Swaths of woodlands in Southeastern United States are being cut down to fuel the biomass boom across the Atlantic. A report by the Natural Resources Defense Council points out that 15 million acres of unprotected forests are at risk. [Digital Journal]
Europe's biomass boom is putting American forests at risk. Photo by cuellar.

Europe’s biomass boom is putting American forests at risk. Photo by cuellar.

  • Sooner than it takes to build a nuclear power station, lithium-air batteries could be helping wind and solar to make coal, oil and nuclear obsolete, according to researchers from the Cambridge University. Five times lighter and five times cheaper than current lithium batteries, Li-air would open the way to our 100% renewable future. [The Ecologist]
  • Allianz CEO Oliver Baete said the company will no longer invest in companies if more than 30% of sales come from coal mining or if they generate more than 30% of electricity from the fossil fuel. Allianz manages about €1.8 trillion in assets, focusing on the U.S., Germany, France, Italy, Britain and the Asia-Pacific region. [Newser]
  • To bring the benefits of solar energy to more of people, especially those who are not wealthy and who otherwise lack easy access to solar power, the Obama administration rolled out a national solar initiative last July. One of its key components, a private-public community solar partnership, is now starting to really come together. [CleanTechnica]
  • A research study has found that using more solar power in Arizona could save 15 billion gallons of water annually. Most of the water used in Arizona is for agriculture, but another common usage is for cooling natural gas, coal, and nuclear power plants. Obviously, operating rooftop solar power does not require such water use. [CleanTechnica]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

November 23 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • An 8.5-MW solar power plant in Rwanda is designed so that, from a bird’s-eye view, it resembles the shape of the African continent. The $23.7 million (£15.6 million) solar field went from contract signing to construction to connection in just a year, defying sceptics of Africa’s ability to realise projects fast. [The Guardian]
The 8.5-MW solar power plant in Rwanda’s famed green hills. Photograph: Cyril Ndegeya / AFP for the Guardian

The 8.5-MW solar power plant in Rwanda’s famed green hills. Photograph: Cyril Ndegeya / AFP for the Guardian

  • In Climate Science, two of the three Democratic presidential candidates are ‘A’ students, while most of the Republican contenders are flunking, according to a panel of scientists who reviewed candidates’ comments. The climate and biological scientists did the rating at the request of The Associated Press. [Watertown Public Opinion]
  • Most people know global oil prices have crashed this year. This was caused by a massive supply glut created by ferocious production from OPEC and near-record US output. The oversupply problem is so bad that oil tankers waiting to be offloaded are piling up off the US Gulf Coast because there’s nowhere to put the crude. [CNN]
  • Battery costs are falling to the point that they are becoming increasingly viable as an option for uses such as supporting the stability of power grids. New electricity storage installed on to the grid to support renewables is likely to grow more than 60-fold from 196 MW of capacity now to 12,700 MW in 2025, according to Navigant. [Irish Times]
  • For the first time ever, over half of all new annual investment into clean energy power generating projects globally went toward projects in emerging markets, rather than toward wealthier countries. Emerging market investments in renewables hit a record annual high of $126 billion in 2014, up $35.5 billion from 2013 levels. [Jakarta Post]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

Solavore Launches Indiegogo Campaign

Green Energy Times supports addressing the problems of indoor air pollution. Unvented fires kill about as many people as outdoor air pollution from fossil fuels. About 10,000 people die from indoor air pollution every day, and many, possibly most, of them are poor women are cooking meals. 

solavore works logo sun

Solavore’s Indiegogo Campaign will Fund Distribution of Solar Ovens in India, Cambodia and Kenya

Social Enterprise Announces Solavore Works Program for Developing Countries

solavore works kenya imageSt. Paul, MN – November 23, 2015 Solavore, LLC, a women-owned social enterprise committed to the manufacture and global distribution of 100% fuel-free clean cooking technology, announced that it is launching an Indiegogo campaign today to initiate a program called Solavore Works that distributes solar ovens to individual families in India, Cambodia and Kenya. Nearly 3 billion families today cook on indoor open fires, resulting in serious respiratory disease and climate-altering deforestation. Founded by former NeXT Computer and 3Com senior operations executive, Anne Patterson, Solavore™ is the manufacturer of the Sport solar oven, a 100% renewable energy solar oven.

Every solar oven purchased helps to fund a Solavore Sport somewhere in the world where an open fire is still the main kitchen appliance. Solavore Works is Solavore’s corporate social responsibility program that supports projects in the developing world. The benefits that Solavore Works brings to communities in the developing world include:

  • Respiratory health: freedom from common diseases such as pneumonia, which kills more women and children each year than malaria or AIDS
  • The removal of one of the main causes of deforestation in the developing world
  • Savings in energy expenditures, which can range up to 25-50% of a family’s budget
  • Water pasteurization and food dehydration
  • The ability for girls to attend school rather than spend their days collecting firewood with their mothers
  • Increased income generation, enabling a woman to sell the food that she bakes or dehydrates in her solar oven

“As a social enterprise, our approach to poverty reduction is more in terms of enabling opportunity and less in terms of aid,” said Anne Patterson, CEO of Solavore. “Not just a source of clean food, we expect these ovens to help their owners develop goods to sell in the marketplace, and local assembly of ovens creates jobs as does the sales, distribution, and support of new ovens.”

The Solavore Sport is a virtually indestructible, retained-heat box-type solar oven made of rugged, durable, lightweight injection-molded nylon resin. Surround insulation and two-pot capacity enable unattended, family-size year-round cooking. The included water pasteurization indicator adds clean water to the Sport’s versatility, along with slow-cooking, baking, and de-hydrating. The Sport solar oven is an industry leader in price, performance, family-size capacity and rugged durability. The solar oven, in conjuction with a small, efficient wood burning stove when sunlight is not available, can reduce a family’s fuel consumption up to 80%.

The campaign’s featured perk is BOGO – Buy One Solavore Sport for your family, Give One to a family in a Solavore Works program. In addition to this, a collection of perks carrying the outdoors, solar, travel themes include:

  • 100% Silk Scarf from Cambodia
  • Nick Brandt (Big Life) photo book, signed copy
  • Secrid Mini Wallet (contributed by SportiqueSF)
  • Fjallraven Backpack (contributed by SportiqueSF)
  • Silicone Solavore trivets/pot-lifters
  • “I’m a Solavore BAGGU” re-usable grocery bag
  • USB Recharger contributed by GoalZero
  • Kristin Laing Designs Solavore necklace
  • Nomad Portable Solar Panel contributed by GoalZero
  • 1 week yoga retreat in Culebra, PR
  • ThermoTent TT3 by ThermoTents
  • One Level-4 Standard Night
  • Solavore CEO Anne Patterson cooks for your social or corporate event

Via profits from the sale of the Sport in the developed world, Solavore aims to empower women through “caring capitalism”. Solavore will direct the funds from this Indiegogo campaign to Solavore Works’ developing country programs which will expand to develop micro-loans and other consumer finance programs.

ABOUT Solavore:

Solavore is a women-owned social enterprise whose mission is to promote clean-cooking technology around the world. The Solavore Sport oven was purpose-built by solar energy executives from 3M Corp. and University of Arizona for maximum efficiency, durability and ease of use. Solavore pledges to use its profits to remain independent and self- sustaining while providing clean cooking alternatives to the world’s 3 billion people who are still cooking over open fires. Over 20,000 Solavore Sport ovens have been deployed in 60 countries. Solavore is an active member of the Global Alliance for Clean Cook Stoves and Solar Cookers International. For further information please visit Follow Solavore on Facebook at, on Instagram and on Twitter @Solavore.

For further Information contact:

Cathy Clarke
CNC Associates
O: 508-833-8533
M: 617-527-2089