Published on July 10th, 2013 | by David L Roberts3
Dave’s Top 10 Clean Energy News Stories From June
This is the second monthly report of 10 of the most compelling renewable energy and clean technology stories encountered from the previous month that have not already been published on CleanTechnica. Literally hundreds of articles are reviewed each month across many energy platforms, including renewables, fuels, energy generation, and conservation — and climate. Here are ten that might have an impact on your business, your life, and the world we live in. Or, at the very least, might surprise you about what’s going on. Hundreds of news tips from June have been distilled here and formatted as “Dave’s Top 10.” Thank you, Mr. Letterman. Here they are, in reverse order:
10. Here are some great guidelines for a company (or building) to become more energy efficient, reduce GHG emissions, and become ISO 50001 EMS (energy management) certified.
9. Here’s what you need to know about Demand Response. Beyond the definition that DR is how the energy end-user responds to utility company “incentives” to use less energy when the grid is threatened, the writer from France’s Schneider Electric waxes both historical and futuristic.
8. Energy giant Schneider (France) has partnered with giant US home builder KB to provide their “Wiser” energy home management system (HMS) as standard equipment for all new KB homes, making residential HMS controllable by iPhone, iPad, and Android devices. Home automation options can also include lighting and security systems.
7. Despite sequestration, the Pentagon awarded $19 Billion for 240 sustainable energy contracts in May, including geothermal energy. The top five companies were Siemens (German), Exelon (Chicago), Enel (Italy), LTC Federal (Detroit), and ECC Renewables (CA).
6. Highlights of the 2013 Alternative Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo in DC include forecasts by experts that — globally — diesel fuels will replace gasoline as the dominant fuel by 2020 and relegate natural gas to a niche fuel at 2–4%. New diesel engine (clean) technologies will dramatically improve efficiency as well as reduce emissions to near zero. Currently, 90% of world’s cargo (80% of US) is already transported by diesel.
5. Volvo trucks endorse relatively new alternative-to-diesel fuel, dimethyl ether (DME), derived from methane gas. Advantages are that it burns far cleaner, is safer due to a lower ignite point, and can be produced locally in smaller quantities, mitigating the national infrastructure issue most fuels face. Downsides are that it is heavier and less fuel efficient.
4. A diesel car may be in your future, given the federal CAFE requirements for 2025 being 54.5mpg, combined with diesel advantages of the lower GHG emissions and better fuel economy. (Currently 50% of Euro cars are diesels vs. only 3% in US.)
3. The CEO of Intelligent Energy makes the case for hydrogen in The Huffington Post, not the least of which being that it a) has zero carbon content and stores readily, b) can be blended with natural gas for a net carbon reduction, and c) in times of excess wind (or solar) electricity generation can be manufactured from water via electrolysis, then stored.
2. The EU intends to reduce GHG emissions 20% by 2020 and 50% by 2050. And in related news, Brazil, a rapidly developing member of the BRICS group, says that it has already reduced its emissions by 39% from 2005–2010.
Top news story of the month for June not already covered by CleanTechnica (my opinion):
1. Global GHG emissions are soaring, and there’s a corresponding (and unsettling) increase in permafrost melt in northern regions (Alaska, Tundra, Greenland), which increases the rate of CO2 and methane entering the atmosphere. Despite reductions in US GHG emissions, the International Energy Agency (IEA) warns of climate change dangers globally since temperatures are on track to increase 6–9 degrees by end of century. In Copenhagen in 2009, members agreed to keep temperature increases to under 4 degrees, which many climate scientists say would still be too high.