Entries by Jeanne Roberts

Seafloor Carpet Turns Surf’s up to Lights On

At the University of California, Berkeley, a team of engineers is pioneering ocean-source energy technology by using “carpet” to capture the energy generated by ocean waves. The team, which includes wave energy guru and Assistant Professor Reza Alam, and Ph.D. Marcus Lehmann, an engineering researcher, aims not only to capture the kinetic energy contained in […]

Boeing’s SBRC Makes Biofuel from Agricultural Rejects

A decade ago, biofuels were considered the Holy Grail of combustion-engine fuels. Measurably cleaner than fossil fuels, they were the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel, at least according to some clean energy experts. Fast forward to 2008, when the biofuel industry’s withdrawal of food crops such as corn, rice, wheat and palm […]

Cliff Majersik, IMT, Identifies Efficiency as Energy’s Biggest Asset

The Institute for Market Transformation (IMT) is a Washington, DC-based nonprofit working in the areas of energy efficiency, green building, and environmental protection. Much of IMT’s effort goes toward correcting inadequacies in the construction/remodeling vertical that prevents investors from taking a stake in energy efficiency and sustainability in the United States. Cliff Majersik, Executive Director, […]

LEED v4, the Evolution of Green

It’s particularly troubling to those of us watching the energy efficiency marketplace to see one program or another take a hard hit. That’s why the 2010 class action lawsuit by Henry Gifford against the US Green Building Council – the parent organization of LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) – had such wide-ranging responses […]

Silent Guardian: Drones without the Scare Factor

Over at Bye Aerospace, Inc., Founder George Bye and colleagues are designing drones. But don’t worry. The Denver, Colorado company, founded in 2007, isn’t the site of the next Evil Empire, and the drones which will eventually start going out the door (here or elsewhere, but not under their own power) are meant for peaceful […]

Skyonic, It’s Not Your Parent’s Carbon Capture Technology

It should come as no surprise to those of us who follow environmental issues vis-à-vis climate and pollution that Norway this week walked away from the longest-running and most disappointing carbon capture plant in the world. Norway, sadly, is not the first, but its abandonment of Mongstad follows a familiar pattern of enormous hope and […]

Enerkem, the Canadian Oil and Waste Rewind

At the intersection of energy and environment, a number of firms are taking on the global challenge of converting various kinds of waste into biofuels and chemicals. Montreal, Quebec-based Enerkem is not only an example, but an examplar. Operating with 10 years worth of technological validation under its belt in the area of proprietary thermochemical […]

Philips Makes LEDs Affordable

In 2008, it was the Holy Grail of residential lighting, according to off-the-gridder Dan Fink. Fink’s parameters were simple; he wanted an LED that retained (or added to) its inherent efficiency while also delivering the kind of light that homeowners identify with incandescent lighting – and all at a price that could easily nudge both […]

Kleiner-Backed Choose Energy Acquires Power2Switch

On September 30, Plano, Texas-based Choose Energy acquired Power2Switch, a Chicago-based company designed to help energy consumers negotiate their way around deregulated electricity markets in New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Texas and Illinois, where the company had its largest footprint. Founded in 2008, Choose Energy offers a user-friendly website that matches deregulated energy suppliers with […]

The Real “Sweet Spot”: Sugar from Post-Consumer Food Waste

Over the past few months, various print and media sources have had a ball describing various food additives with a huge “ick” factor. From pink slime to fetal human kidney cells and beaver anal glands – not to mention beetle secretions that make food shine, or crushed bugs, or even fertilizer in bread to help […]

Deltec Net Zero Homes: They’re Not Just a Pretty Face

Deltec Homes of Asheville, North Carolina has a new line of net zero homes, and Deltec President Steve Linton – a LEED-accredited professional – is convinced that these highly energy-efficient structures will set the cost and energy footprint standard for years to come. LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, a benchmark for “green” […]

Cool Energy from a Solar Heart

The title isn’t confusing once you realize that the ‘cool’ aspect stems from a technological giant step forward in Stirling engine design. Stirling engines, unlike vehicle combustion engines (which burn a fuel), work by expanding and contracting a working fluid at different temperatures. Most Stirling engines work most efficiently at about 1000 degrees Fahrenheit (1000 […]

Biosynthetic Technologies: A Future So Bright They Gotta Wear Shades

In the real world, change happens slowly. A nation, or a neighborhood, isn’t knee deep in fossil-fuel wastes one day and “green” the next. This gradual transition is something that Allen Barbieri, CEO of Irvine, California-based Biosynthetic Technologies LLC, understands very well. Biosynthetic Technologies is one of a small but growing number of energy companies […]