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Global Warming

Waterfront Toronto - West Don Lands design perspective

March 18, 2008 Waterfront Toronto, a 2,000 acre area of largely publicly owned land, is one of the largest urban developments currently underway in North America. As part of the project, a 3500 square meter District Energy Centre is under development which will consist of an interconnected network of underground pipes which that be extended to every area in each of the waterfront precincts. The plant will initially be powered by natural gas but the design will incorporate the necessary features for easy conversion to more sustainable, alternative fuel sources when they are approved for urban use. This "future-proof" system will make the new waterfront neighborhood a more efficient and sustainable user of energy in years to come.  Read More

Beijing National Aquatic Center

February 6, 2008 Construction work on the Beijing National Aquatic Center began in December 2003 in preparation for the 2008 Olympics and four years later, a stunning piece of architecture has been completed. The “Water Cube” is a rectangular-shaped steel building covered by a membrane of brightly lit blue bubbles which is incredible to look at but it is also important on an environmental level. The Water Cube consists of 100,000 sq m of ETFE, (Ethylene Tetrafluoroethylene) a unique transparent plastic which absorbs solar radiation and reduces thermal loss. This is the first time EFTE has been used in China and it is the world’s largest and most complex EFTE building ever constructed.  Read More

Eco vision: carbon neutral and zero waste community
 Image: Foster + Partners

February 5, 2008 Following on from last year's announcement of plans to create the world’s first world’s first zero carbon, zero waste city as part of the Masdar Initiative, the Abu Dhabi government has committed a US$15 billion to help explore, develop and commercialize clean energy sources.  Read More

Air Launcher JET Alpha nozzle

February 1, 2008 In an era where the need to reduce, reuse and recycle is a the top of the agenda, any innovation that helps in this regard is a welcome one. In providing a solution to the specific problem of recycling aerosol cans, Tokyo-based company CC Medico has developed the Air Launcher JET Alpha nozzle, a new type of aerosol nozzle which is easily removed and separated from the can by hand, which makes recycling the cans much easier.  Read More

Kenworth Truck Company plans fleet of LNG vehicles

January 29, 2008 Kenworth Truck Company and Westport Innovations Inc have announced that production of a line of liquefied natural gas vehicles will begin in 2009. The Kenworth T800 LNG trucks will use Westport’s LNG fuel system technology adapted for the Cummins ISX 15-liter engine.  Read More

Energy Island sketch

January 29, 2008 Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion uses the temperature difference between surface and deep-sea water to generate electricity – and though it has an efficiency of just 1-3% - researchers believe an OTEC power plant could deliver up to 250MW of clean power, equivalent to one eighth of a large nuclear power plant, or one quarter of an average fossil fuel power plant. Architect and engineer Dominic Michaelis and his son Alex, along with Trevor Cooper-Chadwick of Southampton University are developing the concept with plans of putting the theory to the test on an unprecedented scale by building a floating, hexagonal Energy Island that will harness energy from OTEC, as well as from winds, sea currents, waves, and the sun.  Read More

Konarka's 'Power Plastic(R)' organic photovoltaic
 material

October 11, 2007 Traditionally, solar panels for buildings have predominantly been stand alone systems mounted to roofs in order to capture sunlight. The growing focus on "green" energy and a move away from reliance on fossil fuels is driving smarter and more integrated methods of procuring alternative energy sources such as solar, and in line with this, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has invested $4.7 million to develop technology that would allow windows and other building applications to be converted into solar panels.  Read More

EOS winery gates

September 18, 2007 The EOS Estate Winery has announced a $3.8 million plan to convert its California Central Coast winery entirely to solar power. To be completed by April, the project will include the installation of more than two acres of ground-mounted tracking solar arrays that will provide all the electrical power needs for the winery and tasting room, while additional roof-mounted solar arrays will provide all the hot water needs. The system will be installed by SunTechnics and will contain 3,084 photovoltaic modules totalling 540 kWp and 60 solar hot water collectors.  Read More

Sustainable House Day 8-9 September 2007

August 22, 2007 Australia will again be celebrating sustainable housing at this year's Sustainable House Day to be held on Sunday 9 September 2007. The event, organized by the Australian and New Zealand Solar Energy Society, is a national open house day for sustainably designed houses and will take place only in Australia this year.  Read More

Eco-friendly family home

August 13, 2007 A rural family home built recently in Massachusetts has used, among other eco-friendly technologies and systems, insulating glass units that will significantly cut the amount of energy used in the home. The Heat Mirror insulating glass unit from Southwall Technologies is a solar reflective film applied to a window’s interior that prevents the loss of radiant heat through the window at least three times more efficiently than double-pane glass.  Read More

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