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It's been a minute -- or a month -- since our last cleantech news roundup, but we're back at it again, and this week we have stories about the state of electric motorcycles, the pros and cons of biofuels, electric supercars, smart wood, solar deals, topsoil fertility, and more.


Cleantech News Roundup: Smart Wood, Electric Motorcycles, Biofuels, Topsoil Fertility …

It’s been a minute — or a month — since our last cleantech news roundup, but we’re back at it again, and this week we have stories about the state of electric motorcycles, the pros and cons of biofuels, electric supercars, smart wood, solar deals, topsoil fertility, and more.

It’s been a minute — or a month — since our last cleantech news roundup, but we’re back at it again, and this week we have stories about the state of electric motorcycles, the pros and cons of biofuels, electric supercars, smart wood, solar deals, topsoil fertility, and more.

In today’s fast-paced internet media environment, you’re bound to miss a lot of news if you aren’t obsessively following cleantech and clean transport topics across a great number of sites. The good news is that in addition to the obsessive coverage we maintain here on CleanTechnica, the team at Important Media also publishes their work on a handful of our other sites as well, which is where you’ll find stories that don’t necessarily fit perfectly on CleanTechnica, but which are still relevant to the bigger picture of building a cleaner and healthier future for us all. And if you want even more cleantech news, join our LinkedIn group CleanTech Enthusiasts, and consider supporting us on Patreon.

Clean Transport

State of the Industry 2018: Electric Motorcycles

While many electric motorcycles have come and gone, and some resort to obscene lawsuits to keep their company alive, some elmoto manufacturers have remained in business and even grown. We’ll look at the state of two-wheeled electrification, big and small, slow and fast in 2018.

Volkswagen & JAC Unveiled the SOL E20X at the 2018 Beijing Auto Show

Based on appearance and the technical details revealed, the SOL E20X is a cosmetic redesign of the existing JAC iEV7S. The SOL E20X is said to utilize AI and provide intelligent connectivity, which has been a big buzzword trend in the Chinese automotive market and R&D world.

Privacy, Ethics, & Silicon Valley’s Role In The New Mobility Industry

If we had a show of hands right now, how many would say they completely trust their computers, handheld devices, smart TV, and other smart devices? Chances are high that practically no reader would say they do. And when it comes to the future of mobility, privacy is something we never hear much about.

Volvo Expects 50% of Global Sales to be Electric in 2025

Volvo made waves last year when the company announced that it had plans to electrify its entire vehicle lineup after 2019, which is right around the corner, actually. And, if Volvo executives are to be believed, the electric vehicle future a number of you have been predicting is right around the corner, too. Like, 2025 around the corner.

Orbis Ring Drive Brings Hybrid Power to 2WD Cars

The promise of in-wheel or “hub” electric motors has always been the easy electrification of existing 2WD cars. Imagine turning a Ford Mustang or Chevy Corvette into an AWD, GTR-baiting hybrid supercar while at the same time making it cleaner and greener on short commutes and errand runs, when the ICE motor is least efficient. It’s a heck of a dream, and one that Orbis is making a reality … with the already insanely fast Honda Civic Type R.

Formula E Season 5: Nissan Reveals 2018-19 Race Car

Season 5 of Formula E racing promises to be the sport’s biggest yet, with the launch of an all-new, Batmobile-inspired spec racer that can — gasp!– go a full race without the need for drivers to swap cars. Another new twist in the Formula E saga for 2018-19 is increased manufacturer support– a fact that was underscored earlier, when Nissan unveiled the livery for its new race car at Geneva.

Meet the Terrifying 1,914 HP Rimac C Two Electric Supercar

The rumors surrounding the all-new Rimac C Two strained the imagination. It would have 2000 HP, they said. It would sprint from 0-60 MPH in less than two seconds, it would cross the finish line at a 1/4 mile drag strip in just 9 seconds and, given enough road, would hit the 300 km/h (186 MPH) mark less than 3 seconds later. It would, Rimac promised, be a world-beater- and, the kicker: it would be 100% electric. Now, here it is.

Peugeot & Citroën Announces The Low Emission Vehicles Business Unit To Focus Only On Electric Cars

The PSA Group, which includes Peugeot and Citroen, has revealed its electric vehicle (EV) roadmap by creating a dedicated unit called the Low Emission Vehicles Business Unit. What does this mean for Peugeot?

VW’s All-Electric Hillclimb Monster Hits the Racetrack

It’s been a big month for VW race fans, as the company’s rumored all-electric hillclimb monster not only broke cover, but ran its first laps in Alès, France, as well. Officially called the ID R, the car weighs less than 2,500 lbs and produces 680 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque, giving it a 0-60 time of 2.25 seconds.

The Pros & Cons of Biofuels (and why some diesels are so polluting)

Bio-ethanol, bio-gas, and hydrogen are the least polluting fuels. Bio-ethanol and bio-gas can both be produced from waste, and from non-food crops using marginal land. The creation of an industry for the production of bio-ethanol and bio-gas would provide farmers with many more opportunities for diversification, and to make money from land which is currently unproductive.

Volvo Set to Begin Sales of its Electric Semi in 2019

Forget waiting for your pre-order to be filled, because Volvo’s all electric commercial trucks are ready to go. To try to drive that marketing point home, the Swedish company announced that sales of its first all-electric truck — as well as deliveries to customers — will begin in 2019.

Workplace EV Charging — A No-Brainer, But Still Things To Think About

Here’s a look at two trends that are generating pull for workplace charging: the challenges faced when considering workplace charging, and what the future holds for workplace charging as part of the overall network of plug-in vehicle charging infrastructure.

Audi Debuts 815 HP e-tron Electric Supercar

Sony’s Gran Turismo family of games has featured a number of carmakers’ concept cars as playable vehicles over the years, but it’s rare for things to go the other way. That is, it’s rare for a car that was designed for the game to be made into a real car. It’s even rarer, still, for that real-life racer to have anywhere near the performance of its digital forebear. That’s what makes this 815 HP, race-ready Audi e-tron Vision Gran Turismo so very special.

Ford Forms New EV Solutions JV for China

It’s just building them for China.

Clean Tech

Gas From Grass, an Eco-friendly Biofuel

Some purists argue against the use of biofuel, on the basis that the source-crops replace either food crops, or plantings, such as forests, essential for filtering CO2 from the atmosphere. They also point out that pollution from burning biofuel is not much better than pollution from burning fossil fuels, though that depends on how efficiently they are burnt.

Smart Wood: Bio-Engineering Trees For Specific Purposes

For the past decade, the researchers have been experimenting with switching individual genes on and off to determine what effect they have on growing trees. But they say they can now model the effects of switching all 21 lignin genes on or off in the lab, which will greatly reduce the amount of time needed to “design” trees that are suitable for particular purposes.

Clean Energy

Canadian Solar Awarded 364 Megawatts Of Solar Projects In Latest Brazil Auction

New Manufacturing Techniques Could Lower The Cost Of Building Integrated Solar

Solar+Storage Project Awarded In India’s Andaman Islands

Solar Tariff Bids Firm Up In Latest India State Auctions

As Solar Bids Firm Up, Indian State Cancels 500 Megawatt Auction

Global Solar PV Inverters Market To Decline From $6.3 To $3.7 Billion By 2022

Everything You Need To Know About Solar Financing

Clean Earth

Climate Group Unveils Interactive Map Showcasing Global Under2 Policies

Climate action non-profit The Climate Group this week unveiled its new Under2 Policy Action Map, an interactive tool which illustrates the numerous successful climate-related policies being implemented by subnational governments around the world which are part of the Under2 Coalition.

Seven EU Member States Call For EU To Align Climate Ambition With Paris Agreement

Seven Member States from the European Union have called on the EU and other Member States to align their long-term climate ambition with the objectives of the Paris Climate Agreement.

Silent Spring Was Published Back In 1962 — Flying-Insect & Bird Populations Have Still Fallen Precipitously Since Then

While it’s perhaps easy to consider this book to have been a large-scale driver of “good,” the reality is that over recent decades, insect and bird populations have been in free fall throughout much of the world.

Topsoil Fertility Decline & Soil Erosion — A Few Musings

While the rapid loss and degradation of much of the world’s topsoil over just the last few centuries isn’t something that will trouble, or even be noted by, whatever forms of life may be living on the Earth a million years from now, they are highly relevant to those living in the world now.

Clean Money

Wells Fargo Announces $200 Billion In Sustainable Financing By 2030

Wells Fargo, one of the top 3 banks in the US, announced its intention to commit $200 billion in financing towards sustainable businesses and projects by 2030 — targeting at least 50% towards clean technologies.

What’s Your Story? Getting Investors Interested in Your Cleantech Startup

Strategic fundraising is one of the most important elements of a small cleantech startup.

Lightsource BP & Everstone Group Form Green Infrastructure Fund For India

Leading Indian and Southeast Asia business group Everstone Group has partnered with leading global renewable energy company Lightsource BP to form EverSource Capital, a fund management platform intended to support green energy infrastructure in India, with financial kickoff support from the UK Government and India’s National Investment and Infrastructure Fund.

Small Businesses Must Meet the Needs of Customers Who Make Ethically Conscious Decisions

Small business owners build a customer base through loyalty to their products and services. Yet, by overlooking the environmentally and ethically conscious customer, many small business owners are missing out on a small but reliable segment of the market.

Brewer Anheuser-Busch Announces US 2025 Sustainability Goals

America’s largest brewing company, Anheuser-Busch, launched its US 2025 Sustainability Goals recently, recommitting to its goal of purchasing 100% of its electricity from renewable energy sources by 2025 and committing itself to the sustainability goals launched in March by its parent company, AB InBev.

Investing In Organizations That Protect the Environment Has Never Been Easier

Consumers may learn about green companies, businesses dedicated to protecting the environment, but find a disconnect between simply knowing about their mission and their ability to participate in it. There’s the misconception that wealthy individuals and accredited investors must take up the mantle of infusing capital into eco-ventures because they have the money to do so. But this is changing!

Don’t Call it Food Waste: Entrepreneurs Turn Surplus Food into Gold

Food startups are diverting raw materials from coffee-bean husks to spent beer-brewing grains from the landfill—and developing markets for upcycled products in the process.

Wunder Capital + CleanTechnica hosted a webinar about The Investment Opportunity in the Growing Solar Market. Wunder CEO and Founder, Bryan Birsic gives an overview of solar investing, Wunder Capital’s work, and hosted a live Q&A with Zachary Shahan, Director of CleanTechnica.

Clean Living

5 Ways to Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

Why I Switched to Organic Shampoo and Conditioner

Feel-Good Fashion That Does Good & Feels Great: prAna

30 Cool Things to Make for Spring

Twinlab Launches National Recycling Program

Recycled Playground Challenge from TerraCycle

Why Coworking is a Key to Freelancer Success

This Pioneering Solar House from 1948 was Designed and Engineered by Women

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Written By

Derek lives in southwestern New Mexico and digs bicycles, simple living, fungi, organic gardening, sustainable lifestyle design, bouldering, and permaculture. He loves fresh roasted chiles, peanut butter on everything, and buckets of coffee. Catch up with Derek on Twitter, Google+, or at his natural parenting site, Natural Papa!


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