Saturday, July 31, 2010

Porsche and Audi`s Greener Vehicles

While Volkswagen will lead the global effort to mass-produce electric cars, the company's other brands, Porsche and Audi, are also launching hybrid and electric vehicles.

Audi will start selling a Q5 hybrid at the end of 2010 and this will be followed by the launch of a hybrid version of its flagship A8 sedan.

Audi's first all-electric car, the e-tron, will be launched at the end of 2012. This high-performance sports car generates 150 kW of power, and has a 0-60 MPH time of 5.9 seconds. What makes the Audi e-tron truly amazing is that it has a 250 kilometer range on a single charge.

The Porsche Cayenne Hybrid is already on the market and the 918 Spyder (with lithium-ion battery, three electric motors and V8 engine) is the fastest plug-in hybrid. The 320 km/h car has a fuel consumption rating of 3.0 l/100 km and 70 g/km CO2. In fully electric, E-Drive mode, the 918 Spyder moves without emissions.
__________________________________

Related Posts
Volkswagen's Dirty Automotive Secrets
Volkswagen's Greener Vehicles
Jaguar XJ: A Greener Luxury Car
E-Range: World's First Fully Electric 4x4
The FIAT 500 is Coming to America
The Winners of the UK's What Car? Green Awards 2010
Honda's CR-Z and Second Generation Hybrids
Honda's Greener Vehicles
Toyota and Tesla Making Electric Sedan
Toyota's Greener Vehicles
Competition in the Green Vehicle Market
Germany and the Global Competition for EV Supremacy
GM's Greener Vehicles
Ford's Greener Vehicles
European Greener Cars
Korean (Hyundai & Kia) Greener Cars
Honda's Greener VehiclesNissan's Greener Vehicles
Electric Vehicles Combat Global Warming
Electric Vehicles Combat Smog
Electric Vehicle Bill Passes Energy Committee
Greening Vehicle Fleets
Greener Commercial Transport Vehicles

Friday, July 30, 2010

Volkswagen's Greener Vehicles

Volkswagen is the largest automaker in Europe, and a leader in cleaner diesel technology and fuel-efficient gas engines. Now Volkswagen is putting its automotive genius to work developing hybrid and fully electric cars.

Volkswagen is investing heavily in the US as part of its plan to become the world's biggest carmaker by 2018. New greener vehicles are also part of Volkswagen's global strategy.

Volkswagen is slated to globally launch four electric cars in 2013. The new Up blue-e-motion is a city specialist, the Golf blue-e-motion is an 85 kW car that has a range of 150 kilometers, and the Jetta blue-e-motion. The Lavida blue-e-motion will launch in China.

Volkswagen wants to take electric mobility mainstream so that it can be the market leader by 2018. This is consistent with the German governments initiative to put one million electric vehicles on the roads by 2020. As stated by Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen, governments must ensure that these vehicles are powered by renewable energy.

“Future electric cars give us enormous opportunities for reshaping mobility to be even more sustainable. When it comes to the environment, however, we must ensure that the energy used to operate these electric cars is produced from renewable sources. Since automotive manufacturers do not have any influence on the types of power plants that are built, the federal government must ensure that eco-friendly energy sources are utilised. Only then will we experience a genuine transition to a new era,” Winterkorn said.

Volkswagen is accelerating production of its hybrid models, including the new Touareg Hybrid which is already on the market. A hybrid version of the Jetta debuts in 2012, then in 2013 more new hybrids will be introduced, including the E-Up!, Golf Hybrid and Passat Hybrid. It will begin a trial fleet of all-electric E-Golf cars next year, at present they have a maximum range of 93 miles on a single charge.

Volkswagen will continue its development work on advanced and extremely efficient gas, diesel and natural gas engines, because a wide variety of drive technologies will coexist into the future.

VW's Electronics Research Lab is working on battery technology for electric cars as well as electronic driver assistance systems. Batteries still need to get smaller, lighter and cheaper. In total, Volkswagen spends more than 5 billion euros (£4.25bn) a year on research and development.

"I am deeply convinced Volkswagen will play a key role in electrifying the automotive world," Winterkorn recently told reporters.

Volkswagen will lead European efforts to mass-produce electric cars and although they do not have the hybrid and EV experience of the Japanese, analysts expect the German carmaker will be a serious competitor.
_________________________________

Related Posts
Porsche and Audi`s Greener Vehicles
The Winners of the UK's What Car? Green Awards 2010
European Greener Cars
Volkswagen's Dirty Automotive Brands
Private Public Cooperation Behind SA Joule
Germany and the Global Competition for EV Supremacy
Governments and the Growth of EVs
Government Investment Fuels Greener Vehicles
Electric Vehicle Bill Passes Energy Committee
Jaguar XJ: A Greener Luxury Car
E-Range: World's First Fully Electric 4x4
The FIAT 500 is Coming to America
Toyota and Tesla Making Electric Sedan
Toyota's Greener Vehicles
Honda's CR-Z and Second Generation Hybrids
Honda's Greener Vehicles
Competition in the Green Vehicle Market
American Electric Vehicle Strategy
Greener Commercial Transport Vehicles
GM's Greener Vehicles
Ford's Greener Vehicles
Korean (Hyundai & Kia) Greener Cars
Nissan's Greener Vehicles
Toyota's Greener Vehicles
Electric Vehicles Combat Global Warming
Electric Vehicles Combat Smog

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Germany and the Global Competition for EV Supremacy

In less than a decade there will be more than one million electric vehicles (EVs) in Germany. That is the goal of the National Platform for Electric Mobility, a new alliance between Germany's largest manufacturers and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Europe, Asia and North America are expecting to see increasing numbers of greener cars. Grid operators in the US and Canada anticipate 1 million plug-in vehicles in North America within 5-10 years. China's major cities have a combined target that exceeds 1 million green cars by 2012. Firms like China’s BYD, Japan’s Nissan, South Korea’s LG Chem, and France’s Renault are already investing massively in greener car technologies.

Governments around the world are investing in hybrid and fully electric vehicles. Japan plans to invest $200 million dollars annually into developing batteries for EVs over five years and France will invest 400 million euros over fours years into research on hybrid power and EVs. The governments of the US, China, France and other EU states are also offering EV buyer incentives in the form of substantial subsidies.

When the Germans surveyed the market and realized that they were falling behind in electric vehicle technology, the country’s economic and transport ministers, as well as Chancellor Merkel called for concentrated, urgent efforts to catch up.

Although nothing breeds success like healthy competition, the German government is doing its part to help the auto industry develop low and zero emission vehicles.

In 2009 the German government awarded €21 million ($27.9 million) to a battery development consortium of 18 industrial and research partners, including chemical giant BASF, Volkswagen, the Fraunhofer Institute and the University of Berlin.

In May 2010 the German government announced a 12 million euros ($15.9 million) award for EV battery research. The award went to a lithium-ion project led by Volkswagen in a joint venture with Varta Microbattery.

In addition to the money invested in research, the German government is being asked to provide direct incentives to electric car buyers and support a broad network of recharging stations.

Germany's proud tradition of automotive excellence has helped it to become one of the world's largest vehicle manufacturing countries. Ten percent of all vehicles produced worldwide come off German production lines. For several decades the automobile industry has been a key sector in the German economy and the most active and largest Industry in the European Union.

Today Germany is also a renewable energy leader. With their new focus on EVs Germany will continue to be a global power, even when the internal combustion engine ceases to be an economic driver.
_______________________________________________

Related Posts
Volkswagen's Dirty Automotive Brands
Volkswagen's Greener Vehicles
Porsche and Audi`s Greener Vehicles
Volkswagen's Greener Vehicles
European Greener Cars
Competition in the Green Vehicle Market
Governments and the Growth of EVs
Government Investment Fuels Greener Vehicles
Chinese Government Investment in Electric Vehicles
Beneficiaries of US Government Investment in EVs
Beneficiaries of Chinese Government Investment in EVs
The New International System: The Role of Government
GM Breakthrough Reduces Emissions
GM's Greener Vehicles^
Electric Vehicle Bill Passes Energy Committee
Private Public Cooperation Behind SA Joule
Jaguar XJ: A Greener Luxury Car
E-Range: World's First Fully Electric 4x4
The FIAT 500 is Coming to America
The Winners of the UK's What Car? Green Awards 2010
Honda's CR-Z and Second Generation Hybrids
Honda's Greener Vehicles
Toyota and Tesla Making Electric Sedan
Toyota's Greener Vehicles
Greening Vehicle Fleets
Greener Commercial Transport Vehicles
American Electric Vehicle Strategy
Ford's Greener Vehicles
Korean (Hyundai & Kia) Greener Cars
Nissan's Greener Vehicles
Electric Vehicle Battery Technology Obstacles and Solutions
The Death of America's Answer to Japanese Cars
Electric Vehicles Combat Global Warming
Electric Vehicles Combat Smog

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Greening Vehicle Fleets



Companies with vehicle fleets can use electric vehicles (EVs), hybrids and fuel efficient vehicles to cut costs and carbon pollution. Fleet efficiency is also about reducing fuel consumption by taking incremental actions, including choosing better routes and avoiding idling. These actions add up to fuel savings and emission reductions, especially when multiplied by the millions of vehicles.

A new video from Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), titled The Power of Scale, shows how small actions done by many can result in big changes for the corporate bottom line and the health of the planet.

Currently, there are over 3 million corporate fleet vehicles in the United States emitting 45 million metric tons of carbon dioxide per year. The Power of Scale video demonstrates that companies can reduce their corporate fleet emissions by 6 million metric tons per year and collectively save over 2 billion dollars.

Fleet efficiency has become an increasingly important issue for corporations as they look for opportunities to reduce their environmental impact. The Power of Scale video offers compelling tools to help companies 'green' their vehicle fleets.

This innovative new video, communicates a complex message in a creative way. This video shows that professionals and consumers can take important steps to incorporate sustainability into their everyday lives. For additional transportation oriented resources see:

Calculate your fleet emissions, Five-Step Green Fleet Framework, Fuel-smart driver training module.
_______________________________________

Related Posts
Greener Commercial Transport Vehicles
American Electric Vehicle Strategy
Electric Vehicles Need New Business Models to Succeed
Electric Vehicle Bill Passes Energy Committee
Governments and the Growth of EVs
Government Investment Fuels Greener Vehicles
Beneficiaries of US Government Investment in EVs
Beneficiaries of Chinese Government Investment in EVsVolkswagen's Greener Vehicles
Volkswagen Wins Green Car of the Year for 2010
Porsche and Audi`s Greener Vehicles
Volkswagen's Dirty Automotive Brands
Private Public Cooperation Behind SA Joule
GM's Greener Vehicles
Ford's Greener Vehicles
European Greener Cars
Korean (Hyundai & Kia) Greener Cars
Honda's Greener Vehicles
Nissan's Greener Vehicles
Toyota's Greener Vehicles
Electric Vehicle Battery Technology Obstacles and Solutions
The Death of America's Answer to Japanese Cars
The Heartbeat of America in Cardiac Arrest
Efficiency and Auto Industry Bailouts
Financing the American Auto Industry

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Governments and the Growth of EVs

Governments can help manage climate change by supporting the transition to electric vehicles (EVs). Fossil Fuel powered vehicles are a leading cause of global warming and as such it is incumbant upon governments to encourage the development of less environmentally harmful transportation technologies. EVs are, at present, our best option to reduce vehicular emissions.

We are on the cusp of an EV explosion that will replace the combustion engine. Hybrids are an increasingly popular bridge technology on the road to fully electric vehicles. Although the Senate Energy Committee recently passed an electric vehicle bill, ongoing changes in public policy are needed to make the switch from fossil fuel engines to EVs.

Governments should enforce a low-carbon fuel standard and power plant emissions regulations as well as fill regulatory gaps.

There are many other things governments can do to increase the adoption of EVs including, provide direct incentives to EV buyers, fund advanced battery research, purchase fleets of EVs, and support EV mass production. Largely by encouraging private investment, governments can also assist with the development of charging EV infrastructure.

The ultimate energy objective is to find a way to manage increasing demand for energy while improving air quality and decreasing CO2 emissions.

EVs offer a meaningful way of decreasing growing emissions, they are one of the keys to solving the environmental and energy challenges we face.

The transition away from fossil fuel powered transportation is as important to the war against climate change as investment in renewables, smart grid technology and efficiency initiatives. However, it will take sustained public policy action to help EVs make the leap from promising technology to commonplace reality.
_________________________________________

Related Posts
Government Investment Fuels Greener Vehicles
Chinese Government Investment in Electric Vehicles
Electric Vehicle Bill Passes Energy Committee
American Electric Vehicle Strategy
GM Breakthrough Reduces Emissions
Beneficiaries of US Government Investment in Electric Vehicles
Beneficiaries of Chinese Government Investment in Electric Vehicles
Private Public Cooperation Behind SA Joule
Competition in the Green Vehicle Market
Germany and the Global Competition for EV Supremacy
Porsche and Audi`s Greener Vehicles
Volkswagen's Greener Vehicles
Volkswagen Wins Green Car of the Year for 2010
Volkswagen's Dirty Automotive Brands
European Greener Cars
GM's Greener Vehicles
Ford's Greener Vehicles
Korean (Hyundai & Kia) Greener Cars
Honda's CR-Z and Second Generation Hybrids
Honda's Greener Vehicles
Nissan's Greener Vehicles
Toyota's Greener Vehicles
Greener Commercial Transport Vehicles
Greening Vehicle Fleets
E-Range: World's First Fully Electric 4x4
Electric Vehicle Battery Technology Obstacles and Solutions
Jaguar XJ: A Greener Luxury Car
The FIAT 500 is Coming to America
The Winners of the UK's What Car? Green Awards 2010
Electric Vehicles Combat Global Warming
Electric Vehicles Combat Smog

Monday, July 26, 2010

Electric Vehicles Combat Smog

Fully electric vehicles and hybrids reduce the urban smog that contributes to respiratory and heart problems. A study from the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory found that powering cars on electricity instead of gasoline would reduce smog-forming volatile organic compounds by 93% and nitrogen oxides by 31%.

A study by the Electric Power Research Institute and the Natural Resources Defense Council found that if current emissions standards for power plants are enforced, converting 40 percent of US cars to plug-in hybrids by 2030 would decrease smog for 61 percent of Americans. Soot would decrease for 82 percent of the population.

Powering cars and trucks on renewable electricity such as wind and solar power, either directly or via the electric grid, would further reduce smog in cities and on highways.
_______________________________

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Electric Vehicles Combat Global Warming

Fully electric vehicles and hybrids are effective weapons in the war against global warming. According to an Environment America report, plug-in cars are an effective way to lower CO2 and use less oil. More than 40 studies demonstrate that plug-in vehicles produce substantially less carbon dioxide than traditional gas powered vehicles.

America can reduce emissions even further by increasing renewable energy production. A study by the Electric Power Research Institute and the Natural Resources Defense Council found that a plug-in hybrid with a 20 mile electric range running on clean electricity would emit less than half the global warming emissions of a plug-in hybrid running on electricity from coal-fired power plants.

Fueling plug-in cars costs two to five cents per mile, or the equivalent of $0.50 to $1.25 a gallon of gasoline. Over a ten year period, fuel savings and federal incentives can reduce the lifetime cost of a plug-in car by as much as $17,000.

Although plug-in hybrids are currently more expensive than conventional vehicles, they will become cheaper over time as battery technology improves and as they are mass produced.
By making use of the energy grid at night when there is lower demand, the current US electric system could fuel 73 percent of US vehicles without requiring any additional power production.

One million plug-in cars charging simultaneously uses only a bit more than one tenth of one percent of America’s current electric capacity.

According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, plug-in hybrids alone could double wind power in the US by 2050. If three quarters of vehicles in the US were powered by electricity, oil use would be reduced by more than half. Electric vehicles can drive the production of renewable energy and reduce oil dependence.
___________________________________________

Related Posts
Electric Vehicles Combat Smog

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Electric Vehicle Bill Passes Energy Committee

An electric vehicles bill received rare bipartisan support last week. On July 21 2010, a bill by Senators Dorgan (D-N.D.), Alexander (R-Tenn.), and Merkley (D-Ore.) was approved by the Senate’s Energy and Natural Resources Committee by a vote of 19-4.

The “Promoting Electric Vehicle Act of 2010,” will reduce fossil fuel consumption through initiatives that will increase the adoption of electric cars and trucks. The fact that 13 Democrats and 6 Republicans supported this bill in the Energy Committee shows that bipartisanship is possible.

“It is outstanding to see bipartisan support for trading in the dirty, expensive fuels of the 19th century for the clean, efficient fuels of the 21st century,” Merkley said. “The bottom line is that electric vehicles save families money on fuel, cause less pollution, and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. I’m proud to partner with Senators Dorgan and Alexander in the drive toward a stronger America.”

The electric vehicle bill includes provisions for “deployment communities” that would oversee targeted incentive programs for electric vehicles and charging infrastructures. This program is designed to accelerate market penetration and develop nationwide best practices for the deployment of electric vehicles.

The goal of the electric vehicle legislation is to have half of US cars and trucks electric powered by 2030. According to the bill's authors, this would cut US demand for oil by about one-third.

Electric vehicles are important, but a forward looking energy strategy must concurrently encourage the growth of renewable sources of power. It is unfortunate that the show of Republican bipartisanship does not carry over to a more comprehensive smart energy policy.
___________________________

Related Posts
Electric Vehicles Combat Global Warming
Electric Vehicles Combat Smog
Competition in the Green Vehicle Market
Germany and the Global Competition for EV Supremacy
Volkswagen's Dirty Automotive Brands
Private Public Cooperation Behind SA Joule
Porsche and Audi`s Greener Vehicles
Volkswagen's Greener Vehicles
Jaguar XJ: A Greener Luxury Car
E-Range: World's First Fully Electric 4x4
The FIAT 500 is Coming to America
The Winners of the UK's What Car? Green Awards 2010
Republicans Undermining Energy Legislation
Cap-and-Trade Legislation Faces Opposition
Boxer-Kerry Climate Change Bill
The Passage of Health Care Legislation and Implications for the Environment
Supreme Court Decision Undermines Climate Change Legislation
Obama Needs the Senate to Succeed on Climate Change
Green Stimulus Spending and Republican Opposition
What is Wrong with the Right
Protecting the Planet from Corporate Influence
The State of Climate Change Negotiations
Why We Did Not Get A Binding Agreement At COP15
How to get Through to Climate Change Deniers

Friday, July 23, 2010

4 Principles for Climate and Energy Legislation

In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Reid, twelve Senators enumerated four principles for climate and energy legislation.

The letter was signed by Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Jack Reed (D-RI), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Ted Kaufman (D-DE), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and Al Franken (D-MN).

1. Oil Spill Response and Prevention

We need to pass legislation to ensure that BP and its contractors, not the American people, pay the full cost of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, and that oil spill liability laws work to deter future spills. We also need to prevent future oil spills with provisions that reform regulation of offshore oil and gas production, increase penalties for violations of environmental and worker safety standards on the outer continental shelf, and prohibit drilling in certain coastal areas.

2. Reducing our Dependence on Foreign Oil

The United States imports 57% of the oil we use, and 70% of those imports come from outside North America. All told, we send $1 billion overseas every day to feed our oil addiction. Those funds often go to countries that do not have our best interests at heart. To reduce this dependence, we should set a national target to eliminate imports from OPEC nations in 20 years, and enact a national plan to meet that goal. The plan will start by building on the recent agreement to improve fuel efficiency standards through 2016 by driving demand for electric vehicles, investing in alternative fuels, and improving access to public transportation. We can pay for these new initiatives by rolling back wasteful subsidies for the world's largest energy companies or with revenue from a price on oil companies' carbon pollution. In just the first quarter of this year, the five largest oil companies reaped over $23 billion in profits.

3. Clean Energy Jobs

Investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency generate more jobs per dollar invested than conventional energy technologies. According to the Pew Charitable Trusts, jobs in these sectors grew two and a half times faster than jobs in the economy as whole between 1998 and 2007. This is just the tip of the iceberg - according to an analysis by the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, investments in clean energy could create 1.7 million net new jobs in the next ten years, significantly increasing our industrial and manufacturing competitiveness.To drive clean energy job growth, while cutting emissions and saving consumers money on their energy bills, clean energy legislation should include a more ambitious renewable energy and energy efficiency standard than the one currently proposed in ACELA. In addition, legislation should include a significant investment in the research, development, and deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, worker training, and clean energy financing. To lower the cost of emissions reductions and help achieve pollution reduction targets, legislation should allow for domestic offsets from agriculture and forestry projects.

4. Make Polluters Pay

The single most important action we can take to reform our energy policy and make the United States a leader in the global clean energy economy is to make polluters pay for the pollution they emit. President Obama has consistently called for establishing a price on carbon as part of any comprehensive clean energy legislation Congress passes.

Putting an effective price on carbon will drive investment in clean energy technology and create the well-paid jobs that will revitalize our economy and sustain it for generations to come. A carbon price will also provide certainty in the energy market, and allow American businesses to make the investment decisions that will allow them to compete in and win the global race for clean energy technology leadership. A price on carbon can be achieved in a number of different ways, but should include the following characteristics:

• A target of at least a 10% reduction in greenhouse gas pollution from 2009 levels by 2020, and an 83% reduction by 2050. This 1% reduction per year through 2020 is consistent with President Obama's goal of a 17% overall reduction in greenhouse gas pollution by 2020.
• Equal or greater investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy as for subsidies given to traditional, non-renewable fuels from revenues raised by establishing a price on carbon.
• Protect consumers by returning a majority of the revenue generated from pricing carbon directly to American households.
• Retain all existing authorities related to conventional pollutants. We should not weaken existing pollution laws that protect public health and the environment in exchange for establishing a price on carbon.
___________________________________

Related Posts
Republicans Undermining Energy Legislation
Cap-and-Trade Legislation Faces Opposition
Boxer-Kerry Climate Change Bill
The Passage of Health Care Legislation and Implications for the Environment
Supreme Court Decision Undermines Climate Change Legislation
Obama Needs the Senate to Succeed on Climate Change
Green Stimulus Spending and Republican Opposition
What is Wrong with the Right
Protecting the Planet from Corporate Influence
The Business of Climate Change Deception
The Cost of a Global Deal on Climate Change
The State of Climate Change Negotiations
Why We Did Not Get A Binding Agreement At COP15
How to get Through to Climate Change Deniers

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Republicans Undermining Climate Legislation

President Barack Obama, supports climate and energy legislation, however, with just days remaining on the Senate's summer schedule, he does have the support he needs to get the bill through the Senate.

The authors of the latest version of the climate and energy legislation, Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), are continuing negotiations with the utility trade group Edison Electric Institute (EEI).

There are many good reasons to get behind comprehensive energy legislation. Last year, Research findings released by the University of Illinois, Yale University and the University of California showed that comprehensive clean energy legislation would create up to 1.9 million new jobs, increase yearly household income by up to $1,175 and boost annual GDP by up to $111 billion by 2020.

In a bid to gain Republican approval, the draft bill now being considered is a small scale version of the original comprehensive energy reform that passed in the House. To gain wider GOP approval, senators Kerry and Lieberman have adopted a much more modest approach that limits cap-and-trade to utilities.

The proposed new cap-and-trade provision would tax carbon dioxide emissions produced by coal-fired power plants and other large polluters to reduce global warming causing pollution. The idea initially appeared to win a critical Republican endorsement from Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe after she attended a White House meeting.

It was not that long ago that many Republicans publicly endorsed cap-and-trade. The list of Republican senators who previously supported cap-and-trade includes John McCain (R-Ariz.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), and Scott Brown (R-Mass.). Today you would have a better chance of finding a black man at a tea party convention then finding a Republican who will laud cap-and-trade.

With less than two weeks remaining before a month-long recess, strident opposition from Republicans like Sen. George Voinovich (R-Ohio) make the passage of what Republicans are calling the "national energy tax" unlikely.

"Anybody that's been in the Senate for any period of time knows there's no way -- no way -- that an energy bill is going to get done between now and the election, or for that matter, between now and the end of this year," Voinovich said. "Cap and trade is dead, OK?" he added.

Their motivations are clear, rather than do what is best for America, Republican lawmakers are playing politics.
_________________________________________

Related Posts
Cap-and-Trade Legislation Faces Opposition
Boxer-Kerry Climate Change Bill
The Passage of Health Care Legislation and Implications for the Environment
Supreme Court Decision Undermines Climate Change Legislation
Obama Needs the Senate to Succeed on Climate Change
Green Stimulus Spending and Republican Opposition
What is Wrong with the Right
Protecting the Planet from Corporate Influence
The Business of Climate Change Deception
The Cost of a Global Deal on Climate Change
The State of Climate Change Negotiations
Why We Did Not Get A Binding Agreement At COP15
How to get Through to Climate Change Deniers

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

CleanTech Open Conference

On July 22 2010, the CleanTech Open will bring entrepreneurs and industry together to discuss how clean technologies can lead the economic recovery. The conference will explore ways of supporting the invaluable role of innovative cleantech entrepreneurs.

The event will review the key players involved in enhancing cleantech's role in the economy, as well as explore ways of coordinating the efforts of the public and private sectors.

The keynote addresses and six themed panels will feature nationally recognized speakers. The full day of speakers and networking will be followed by an evening wine reception.

This event is not merely promoting the growth of cleantech. This conference is helping to develop a roadmap that will accelerate the cleantech revolution by encouraging entrepreneurship. For more information go to the CleanTech Open Site. _____________________________

Related Posts

Monday, July 19, 2010

Cap-and-Trade Legislation Faces Opposition

Senators John Kerry and Joe Lieberman's new draft bill focuses on capping greenhouse gas pollution from electric power utilities.

In a cap-and-trade market, businesses that cut pollution could sell credits to companies that do not. The current version of the climate/energy bill before the Senate scales back cap-and-trade from a broad approach to a narrow focus emphasizing utilities.

Ten eastern US states have capped emissions from utilities for two years under a plan called the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Some have suggested this plan could serve as a template for a national plan, but not everyone is in agreement.

The American Chemistry Council is opposed to utility-first legislation and states like West Virginia, which use coal, are against it because they would pay more for electricity. Caps are also opposed by states like Ohio that are reliant on energy-intensive manufacturing industries.

On Wednesday July 14 2010, two US business groups announced their opposition to the latest version of the climate change draft.

Others see cap-and-trade as a tremendous opportunity that can drive the recovery. Several publicly traded power companies such as Duke Energy have backed the idea of utility first carbon caps, saying that such a plan would give them cause to invest billions of dollars in renewable sources of energy like wind and solar.

Although President Obma is very clear about putting a price on carbon, a new national survey commissioned by the Institute for Energy Research found that 70 percent of Americans oppose new energy taxes that will drive up domestic energy costs.

Some Senators are seeking a bill that will not impose carbon controls on utilities, however, any further dilution of cap-and-trade legislation will render it meaningless.
_______________________________

Related Posts
US Cap-and-Trade: What and Why
US Cap-and-Trade: Business
US Cap-and-Trade: Solutions
US Cap-and-Trade: Positioning Your Business
US Cap-and-Trade Implications for Business
Small Business Can Save Cap-and-Trade
Small Business' Silence on US Cap-and-trade Legislation
Helping Small Business Accept US Cap-and-Trade
US Cap-and-Trade: Obstacles and Solutions
Cap-and-trade in Ontario and Quebec
Protecting the Planet from Corporate Influence
The Cost of a Global Deal on Climate Change
Green Blueprint
Green Capitalism
Creative Capitalism: Market-Based Social Change

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Cannon`s Green Efforts Under Fire

Canon has been focused on making eco-friendly products for 30 years. In July of 2010, the electronics manufacturer launched an ambitious green marketing program in Asia.

Cannon`s GreenNation program touts the eco-friendliness and the energy efficiency of its products. The GreenNation campaign also has a program that recycles the Canon Selphy and PIXMA ink cartridges. Cannon has also produced Malaysia’s first “green” scientific calculator.

Despite these efforts, Cannon is under fire from environmentalists. Influential environmental media outlets like Triple Pundit and ENN are criticizing Cannon for what is seen as contradictions in its marketing message.

Canon claims that a new line of printers have components that are made with recycled materials, but its company’s literature indicates that the exterior is actually made from biomass plastic.
Canon`s new printers also use electricity more efficiently. Canon states that the devices use only 1 watt of power when at rest, or a 90% reduction. But this is now a common feature employed by many electronic manufacturers.

Although not as good as paperless offices, Canon`s line of “eco-image” paper, is sourced from eucalyptus trees which can be harvested quickly and replenished easily. While paper from post-consumer content is preferable, plant fiber is a better option than tree fiber.

Scrutiny encourages accurate sustainability claims and vigilance encourages ongoing environmental improvements. However, it is important to acknowledge progress and give credit where credit is due. Canon may be less than perfect, but we need to be very careful about unfounded allegations of greenwashing.
_______________________________

Related Posts

Friday, July 16, 2010

Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Capped

On Thursday July 15, 2010 the oil stopped flowing from the seabed in the Gulf of Mexico.

Several previous attempts have failed to arrest the gushing torrent of crude, but this attempt to cap the well appears to have succeeded, at least temporarily.

As of today, Friday July 16, the pressure inside the cap is manageable and there are no signs of new leaks. The plan is to contain the leak until the completion of a relief well. In the next few days, BP plans to resume drilling the relief well after tests on the new cap are completed.

For months, the world has been watching the environmental disaster unfold. During this time, more than 700 million liters of oil have leaked into the Gulf of Mexico.

Although much of the impact comes from the oil itself, efforts to manage the spill have also taken a toll. Dispersants used to reduce the size of the oil slick are having a profound impact on marine ecosystems.

A scientific survey of Louisiana's coastal oyster grounds indicate that they have also suffered extensive deaths. These deaths are attributable to the opening of release valves on the Mississippi River in an attempt to use fresh water to flush the oil out to sea.

The fishing industry in the Gulf has been decimated, ending livlihoods and a way of life that has endured for centuries. Although the catastrophic impacts may take years to fully assess, it is clear that the direct and indirect costs of this disaster are unacceptable.
________________________________________

Related Posts
Offshore Oil is an Avoidable Tragedy
The Costs of Offshore Drilling
BP's Corporate Irresponsibility
Responsibility for the Costs of the Gulf Oil Spill
Managing the Massive Gulf Oil Spill
The End of Oil and the Next Energy Economy
Peak Oil
The Economic Calamity of Peak Oil
Reigning in Irresponsible Oil Giants Chevron and Exxon Mobil
The Business of Climate Change Deception
Planning a Future Without Oil
Drill Baby Drill
Koch Industries' Environmental Crimes
Koch Industries Financing Climate Denial
Koch Industries Destroys the Environment & Funds Climate Denial
Protecting the Planet from Corporate Influence
How to get Through to Climate Change Deniers
America's New Fuel Efficiency Standards

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

G3 Guidelines and GRI Sustainability Reporting

The The G3 Guidelines are the cornerstone of the GRI Sustainability Reporting Framework. They are used as the basis of an organization's annual reporting.

The Guidelines outline core content for reporting and are relevant to all organizations regardless of size, sector, or location. They are the foundation upon which all other GRI reporting guidance is based.

The G3 Guidelines outline a disclosure framework that organizations can be voluntarily, flexibly, and incrementally adopted. The flexibility of the G3 format allows organizations to plot a path for continual improvement of their sustainability reporting practices.

Part 1 – Reporting Principles and Guidance
-Principles to define report content: materiality, stakeholder inclusiveness, sustainability context, and completeness.
-Principles to define report quality: balance, comparability, accuracy, timeliness, reliability, and
clarity.
-Guidance on how to set the report boundary.

Part 2 – Standard Disclosures
-Strategy and Profile
-Management Approach
-Performance Indicators

The Guidelines are updated incrementally. This process represents a change from the previous revision cycles, in which the entire set of Guidelines were subject to revision. Going forward, GRI will use a process involving incremental updates that will target specific revision goals - addressing only certain portions of the Guidelines.

On an annual basis, GRI invites stakeholders to identify their priorities in Q4 for further development of the guidelines. The stakeholder feedback is then reviewed and used to formulate a draft plan. The draft plan is posted on the GRI website for public comment. The Board of Directors will approve a final set of priorities for implementation for the next fiscal year based on feedback from the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) and the Stakeholder Council (SC). This plan will take into account any ongoing projects from previous years that have not yet been completed. GRI will form working groups to develop draft revisions for review by the TAC. Following the TAC review, the draft revisions will be forwarded to the SC for their concur/non-concur and then to the Board for a final decision.
Updates to the guidelines are issued when the work is completed.

GRI is involved with several projects related to updating the guidelines including Community Indicators. As part of the general process of continuously improving the Sustainability Reporting Framework, GRI is working to improve the Community Indicators in the G3 Guidelines.

_________________________________

Related Posts
ISO 14020 Series: 3 Types of Environmental Labels and Declarations
ISO Principles for Environmental Labels and Claims
The History and Value of Environmental Labeling
Standards to Combat Eco-label and Eco-Certification Confusion
Canadian Guidelines on Environmental Claims
Organic Standards and Certified Labels

ISO 50001 Energy Management Standard
The Implications of ISO 50001 for Your Business
ISO Standards and Greener Vehicles
ISO 14001 Certification in the Solar Sector
Cititec ISO Environmental Management
Best Practices for Sustainable Businesses

Canon Reaffirms Green Procurement Program for Earth Day
The Green Job Market
Environmental Revolution: Technology Certification
IT Sector Should Leverage Their Supply Chains
Sustainable Supply Chains
Puma's Sustainable Supply Chain
Walmart and HP's Sustainable Supply Chains
America's New Fuel Efficiency Standards
Growing US Corporate Investments are Driving Cleantech in 2010
Best Practices for Communicating Sustainability
Green Marketing Legislation