Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Special Report: Potato Chips Go Green

Originally published at Environmental Graffiti (though by me, of course).

Frito-Lay, after realizing how much energy it takes for its factories to make (not to mention eat) potato chips, has announced that it will take an Arizona factory off the grid.

The design is capable of reducing electricity and water consumption 90%. And the company was only aiming for a 50% reduction. In total, greenhouse gas reduction could be at up to 75%.

The factory has a totally revolutionary design.

Most waste produced by the factory can be and will be used. Potato peelings will be used to fertilize farmland. Filters will recycle wastewater and use it to power the factory. Other wastewater will be burned to produce methane to power boilers.

The factory also does the small things. More fuel efficient ovens have been purchased, along with vacuum hoses to absorb moisture from the taters. Less moisture allows the potatoes to be cooked using less heat, thereby saving electricity. Heat from heat stacks will be recaptured and reused. Skylights light up the whole factory.

Renewable energy will power much of the plant. 50 acres of solar concentrators are to be built behind the plant for energy, and a biomass generator will burn agricultural waste to produce even more energy.

If successful, the plan will be replicated at other sites across the country.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Google Goes Green

Google, Inc. announced today that it has launched an inititive, named Renewable Energy, Cheaper Than Coal, to work with engineers and investment companies to promote renewable energies.

The central targets will be advanced thermal solar power, wind power, and advanced geothermal systems.

"Our goal is to produce one gigawatt of renewable energy capacity that is cheaper than coal. We are optimistic this can be done in years, not decades," Larry Page, Google's co-founder and president of products, said in a statement.

One gigawatt could power San Francisco.

Google will work with REGoogle Press Release

Monday, November 26, 2007

Offsetting Farts: By Switching Off Lightbulbs

Written in correlation with Thoughts on Global Warming, Thoughts on the World, and The Statistics Monster.

Humanity is facing quite a serious epidemic: farts. Humanity’s gaseous eating habits are causing methane and CO2 to be released into the atmosphere. Your buttocks are like factories wearing pants.

The average human farts 12-18 times a day. That means, every day, the average human produces 45 milliliters of CO2 and 35 milliliters of methane. Methane, by the way, is 25 times as potent of a greenhouse gas as CO2.

That is a lot of gas. Therefore, my friends, I have come up with a solution to our flatulence-epidemic.

Every time one farts, one must turn off one lightbulb for thirty seconds to offset the greenhouse gases produced by one’s anus.

Simple as that. We don’t even need oversight or regulation. Just keep track for yourself, like the guy in the picture.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

[POLL] Should Australia Sign the Kyoto Protocol?

Voting Booth

Should Australia Sign the Kyoto Protocol?
Other free polls

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Global Warming: The Deciding Factor of an Election

Today, Australians went to the polls and voted for a new direction. They voted out the incumbent, John Howard, and voted in Kevin Rudd.

The opinion is held wisely that Howard was voted out because of his failing economic policies – wait, excuse me, I’m being handed a note by my producer. It appears that – no! Howard’s economic policies were hugely successful! High economic growth, low unemployment, relatively low interest rates, tax reform, a more flexible workplace, zero Government debt, excellent international credit rating, strong investment in defense force funding, the list continues. This is strange…

Why was Howard voted out? Because of global warming. Australia is the only major industrialized country other than the U.S. not to sign the Kyoto Protocol. Howard was the staunchest backer of the Bush administration’s environmental policy. Australians seem to be very displeased not with the economic direction of their country, but the environmental direction.

Why? One report suggests that Australia, because of its geographic position and natural climate, will be hit hard by global warming.

Okay. Maybe there were one or two other policies the Aussies didn’t like. Like his support of the Iraq war, and his decision to send troops there.

But it is pretty safe to say that one of the major issues this election was global warming. Hopefully, the environment will be just as important in other elections.

Oil Watch: 11/19/07 - 11/24/07 Prices, Causes and Effects

Closing price: $98.18 per barrel (up)
National gas average: $3.08 (down)

Expect oil prices to stay steady or even drop, unless prices hit $100. Most likely though, oil will drop as production is expected to increase.

1. Weak dollar (again)
Yes, this is essentially permanent. A lower dollar makes oil cheaper in countries that use other currencies.
2. Thanksgiving
Needs no explanation.

OPEC finally seems ready to increase output.

Friday, November 23, 2007

New Algae-to-Biodiesel Facility to be Built

Midwest (TGW) – Green Star Products Inc. (GSPI) announced this week that it has signed a contract to build a 100-acre algae to biodiesel facility.

The plant will use the CO2 emitted from the plant to feed the algae, which reduces the overall emissions of the facility.

Algae oil will be produced at the plant, and other existing facilities will convert that algae oil to biodiesel.

Biotech Research, Inc. (BTR) has signed the contract with GSPI, and preparation for construction will begin in March 2008. BTR is planning to build several 1000-acre algae facilities.

Algae is much more efficient of a biofuel than what is used currently (corn and sugarcane). Algae absorbs CO2, and produces 100 times more oil per acre than other biodiesel sources such as soy.

Via :: Green Progress :: GSPI Press Release

Thursday, November 22, 2007

New Jersey May Ban Plastic Bags

New Jersey (TGW) – New Jersey could become the first state to ban plastics bags, under a measure introduced into the New Jersey state Assembly.

The bill would force supermarkets and other stores with more than 10,000 square feet of space to ban plastic bags.

"Plastic bags may be cheap and convenient, but they have costly long-term environmental consequences that just can't be ignored," Assemblyman Herb Conaway, a sponsor of the measure. "We need to get these bags out of the waste stream because they are polluting our soil and our water."

San Francisco became the first city last year to ban plastic bags, and New York is considering similar measures. Many countries have also banned plastic bags, because of environmental concerns.

Via :: Boston Globe

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Largest Biomass Plant in the World to be Built in England

UK (TGW) – The UK has approved plans to build the world’s biggest biomass plant.

The $824 million, 350 megawatt plant will be built by Prenergy for Port Talbot, and will burn mostly woodchips.

"This will be the biggest biomass plant in the world, generating enough clean electricity to power half of the homes in Wales. It joins eight major renewable projects already given the green light in the past 12 months alone and is another important step towards the low-carbon economy envisaged by the prime minister."

Via :: Reuters

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Dr. Anne-Marie Warris Discusses the Voluntary Carbon Standard

Yesterday we reported the launch of the Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS), a brand new carbon standard that seeks to certify carbon offsets.

Yesterday, LRQA’s Dr. Anne-Marie Warris gave an interview to She discusses the impact VCS will have on the market, the obstacles it will face, and outlines the next 18 months of growth. You can listen to or read the transcript of the podcast here:

New Indiana Clean Coal Plant Will Replace 1940s Coal Plant

Indiana (TGW) – Indiana regulators have approved a new 630 megawatt clean coal plant.

The plant will replace an existing plant built in the 1940s. It will sequester harmful carbon dioxide underground.

Via :: Reuters

Monday, November 19, 2007

Hydrogen Powered Boat!

A hydrogen powered boat designed by Kenneth Venenenbos will debut next year in Amsterdam. The boat can hold 100 people and is transparent.

British Artists Buys Solar Panels with Capacity of Generating 2% of Britain's Total

England (TGW) – Damien Hirst, the British artist, is spending $3 million on a 310kw solar power system for his home in Gloucestershire.

The panels will generate enough electricity to power 150 homes, and will cover 1800 square kilometers. The power generated by his home will account for approximately 2% of all solar energy generated in the U.K.

Only the Cooperative Insurance Society Tower has a larger solar power system.

Dave Timms, economics campaigner at Friends of the Earth, said: "This is great news. Good on Damien Hirst. He'll probably do more to boost confidence in the UK solar industry than the government has over the past few years.

"However, we can't rely on the environmentally aware wealthy to nurture the low carbon industries. We need a feed-in tariff scheme which would reward all businesses and individuals who invest in small-scale renewable technologies with a guaranteed premium price for the clean electricity they generate."

Germany already uses the specified type of system.

Via :: The Guardian

Both the UAE and Qatar Pledge $300 Million for the Environment

Saudi Arabia (TGW) – Both the United Arab Emirates and Qatar have pledged to spend $150 million on environmental research, Saudi Arabia said this week.

The vow came days after we reported Saudi Arabia promised $300 million for the environment.

Via :: Reuters

New Carbon Offsets Standard Launched

London (TGW) – The Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS) was launched today, and aims for transparency of the unregulated carbon offsets market.

The standard has been endorsed by the International Organization for Standardization.

“Our research indicates that the VCS will become the leading standard against which all voluntary offset projects are judged,” said Richard Bayon, the director of Ecosystem Marketplace.

Andrei Marcu, President of The International Emissions Trading Association (IETA) and co-chair of the VCS Steering Committee, said: "While the main action must be in regulatory approaches, voluntary actions and offsets have an important role to play, and the VCS will provide them with necessary credibility."

Mark Kenber, Policy Director of The Climate Group and co-chair of the VCS Steering Committee, said: "The Voluntary Carbon Standard means business and consumer buyers can now trust the offsets they buy. Its robust quality assurance will trigger a new global confidence in the voluntary market from corporate buyers, consumers, and policy-makers. The VCS is vital for the environment and for growth of an important global market."

Via :: VCS Press Release

Radical New Global Warming Suggests Enhancing CO2 Absorbing Capabilities of the Ocean

Earth (TGW) – A team of researchers is proposing a new method to counteract global warming by strengthening the ocean’s ability to absorb carbon dioxide.

The team, led by Kurt House, has suggested that about 100 water treatment plants would treat ocean water to enhance its ability to absorb CO2.

The plan could result in ‘a 15 percent reduction in emissions’. 700 plants would offset all of human emissions.

The plants would remove hydrochloric acid, therefore increasing the alkalinity of the water, increasing the water’s CO2 absorbing potential.

"The least risky trajectory is to significantly cut our carbon dioxide emissions -- but we may not be able to cut them rapidly enough to avoid unacceptable levels of climate change," said team member Michael Aziz. "If it looks like we're not going to make it, the 'House Process' has the potential to let us rescind a portion of those emissions while mitigating some of the chemical impacts the excess CO2 will have on the oceans. It won't be ready in time, though, if we wait until we're sure we'll need it before pursuing R&D on the technical and environmental issues involved."

Via :: Science Daily :: EurekAlert

Sunday, November 18, 2007

[POLL] Are You Concerned About Global Warming?

Voting Booth

Are you concerned about global warming?
Yes - Poor Penguins!
No - Surf's up man!
I live under a rock and have NO idea what you're talking about free polls

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Oil Watch: 11/12/2007 - 11/17/2007 - Prices, Causes, and Effects

Closing price: $95.10 per barrel (down)
National gas average: $3.10 (up)

Oil down since last week, the first time in a while, but don’t expect $60 or $70 or even $80 anytime soon. Our prediction still stands: $100 oil soon.

1. Dollar rising\weak dollar (again)
The dollar is still on life support, but it’s doing better. A lower dollar makes oil cheaper in countries that use other currencies.
2. Nigerian output disruptions
Rebels. Again.
3. More oil than expected
Government data showed a surprise 2.8 million build in crude inventories last week

Gas prices still slowly rising, along with heating oil prices.

IPCC Synthesis Report

Everyone should hopefully check out the news briefs on the new IPCC report.




Saudi Arabia to Donate $300 Million for Environmental Research

Saudi Arabia (TGW) – Saudi Arabia will give $300 million for research into helping the environment, King Abdullah said Saturday.

"We will give $300 million for research into helping the environment," he said in a speech during a summit of OPEC heads of state which is taking place in the Saudi capital.

Saudi Arabia is the largest exporter of oil in the world.

Via :: Reuters

Friday, November 16, 2007

And the "Green Car of the Year Award" Goes To...

Los Angeles (TGW) – GM’s Chevrolet Tahoe Hybrid was named “Green Car of the Year” at the Los Angeles Auto Show yesterday.

"They've proven that they can make beautiful cars, strong cars, keep the size, keep the safety, and all those kinds of things, and at the same time be more fuel efficient," said California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

"I think because we in California have been out there so strong, forcing the manufacturers to come in with clean vehicles, that is why they are coming in with clean vehicles."

The award is presented by Green Car Journal.

Via :: Reuters

Midwestern States Sign Greenhouse Gas Deal - Nearly 50% of Americans Now Covered by Some Agreement

Milwaukee (TGW) – Midwest states signed agreements Thursday designed to cut greenhouse gas emissions, promote conservation, and fight global warming.

George Bush has refused sign any federal law limiting greenhouse gas emissions.

"We are a little smaller, more nimble than the federal government ... perhaps we can roll it up into part of a larger national policy," said Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty.

The pact means that now nearly half of all Americans live under some agreement devised to fight global warming.

The states that the agreement covers span from Ohio to Kansas. If the same group of states were an individual country, it would be the fifth largest producer of greenhouse gases.

Other groups of states have signed agreements as well. States on the East Coast have the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and the Western Regional Climate Action Initiative.

Via :: Reuters

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Solar Powered mp4 Player

Chinese company ChinaVasion has come out with a 2GB solar powered mp4 player.

It has 2 solar panels for either recharging the built in Li-ion batteries or recharging other electrical devices through its USB port.

It’s pretty sick.

Australians Worst Carbon Emitters Per Capita, U.S. Number Two

Internet (TGW) – Australians, per capita, are the world’s worst carbon dioxide emitters, polluting 5 times as much pollution as China.

The report was compiled by the online Carbon Monitoring for Action (CARMA) group, an online database with information on the emissions of every power plant in the world.

The U.S. came in second, and produces the most emissions per country.

Australians emit 10 tons of CO2 per person, while Americans emit 8. Chinese emit approximately 2 tons, and Indians around .5 tons.

Via :: BBC

Greenpeace Activists Shut Down Coal Power Plant

Australia (TGW) – Greenpeace activists shut down an Australian coal-fired power plant Thursday to protest the plants effect on the environment.

"Climate activists have taken non-violent direct action to shut down the power station ... by locking onto the conveyor system and preventing coal from feeding the plant," Greenpeace Head of Campaigns Steve Campbell said in a statement.

15 activists stopped the conveyor belt and hung banners reading “Climate change starts here” and “Coal kills”.

Coal-powered electricity generation releases fossil fuels into the atmosphere, which in turn cause global warming. Other than fossil fuels, coal-powered electricity generation releases radioactive material and other wastes into the environment.

Via :: Reuters

'State of the Carbon Cycle' in North America Released

U.S. (TGW) – The first “State of the Carbon Cycle of Report” for North America was released today by the U.S. Climate Change Science Program.

It found the ‘carbon budget increasingly overwhelmed by human-caused emissions’.

"By burning fossil fuel and clearing forests human beings have significantly altered the global carbon cycle," says Chris Field of the Carnegie Institution's Department of Global Ecology, one of the report's lead authors.

The report warns that natural reducers of carbon dioxide are taking in less carbon dioxide, because of human activity and the fact that they can only take in so much CO2.

"There are a lot of good reasons for replenishing our forests and encouraging better agricultural practices," says Ken Caldeira, another author of the report, also at Carnegie's Department of Global Ecology. "But if we want to mitigate our impact on the carbon cycle, there's no escaping the fact that we need to drastically reduce carbon dioxide emissions."

Via :: Science Daily

CARMA, an Online Database - Find Out How Much CO2 Your Local Power Plant Produces

Internet (TGW) – The Center for Global Development has compiled an online database of the CO2 emissions of 50,000 power plants across the world.

The database is named CARMA, for Carbon Monitoring for Action. The database can be found at

A research team led by David Wheeler put together the information to rank individual power plants.

"CARMA makes information about power-related CO2 emissions transparent to people throughout the world," says Dr. Wheeler, an expert in the use of public information disclosure to reduce pollution. "Information leads to action. We know that this works for other forms of pollution and we believe it can work for greenhouse gas emissions, too."

"We expect that institutional and private investors, insurers, lenders, environmental and consumer groups and individual activists will use the CARMA data to encourage power companies to burn less coal and oil and to shift to renewable power sources, such as wind and solar," Dr. Wheeler says.

The database has a huge potential for individual activists and activist groups.

"CARMA is unique, one of a kind--a world standard," says CGD president Nancy Birdsall. "Never before has this kind of detailed information been made available on a global scale. Not only is it likely to catalyze action to cut emissions now, it also strengthens the knowledge base for monitoring any future international market-based agreement, whether a carbon tax or cap-and-trade. Let us hope it speeds the way to an agreement -- which matters immensely for the well-being of hundreds of millions of people in developing countries."

Via :: Science Daily

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

London to Buy 10 Red Hydrogen Powered Buses

London (TGW) – London has signed a $20 million contract to buy 10 hydrogen powered red buses.

"London is now the first city in Europe to commit to a hydrogen bus fleet of this size, which will match traditional diesel buses in terms of performance," London Mayor Ken Livingstone said.

"This represents a huge step forward from the previous hydrogen trials in the capital and is an important step towards my target of having five per cent of all public sector fleet vehicles powered by hydrogen by 2015," he added.

Mike Weston, Operations Director for London Buses, said the hydrogen buses were worth the extra cost.

Via :: Reuters

New System of Producing Hydrogen does not Use Fossil Fuels

Pennsylvania (TGW) – Bacteria that feeds on vinegar and waste water that is electrocuted could produce clean hydrogen fuel for cars, according to a report published by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania.

"This process produces 288 percent more energy in hydrogen than the electrical energy that is added to the process," said Bruce E. Logan, the Kappe professor of environmental engineering.

Currently, hydrogen for transportation comes from fossil fuels. Even though the car emits no greenhouse gases, the manufacturing of hydrogen does.

"This is a method of using renewable organic matter, using anything that's biodegradable and being able to generate hydrogen from that material," Logan said.

Though the cells are too large to be put in cars, they can still be made at a factory.

"You could put one of these reactors at a food processing plant and take the waste water and make hydrogen out of it," Logan said. "Or you could go to a farm, where there's lot of cellulose or ... agricultural cellosic residues, take that and make hydrogen there."

"The first step is just to start using locations where we have waste waters that were spending money on treating, and turning those water treatment plants into hydrogen production plants," Logan said.

The researchers have filed a patent for their work.

Via :: Reuters :: Science Daily

Monday, November 12, 2007

First Commercial Cellulosic Ethanol Plant in U.S. to be Built Next Year

Georgia (TGW) – Range Fuels announced today that is going to build the first commercial cellulosic ethanol plant in the country.

The plant will use wood waste from Georgia’s mills and will be able to produce over 100 million gallons of ethanol a year.

Cellulosic ethanol is made from waste sources, like wood chips and switch grass.

It is much more environmentally friendly than corn ethanol.

"Range Fuel's production of cellulosic ethanol from wood materials will make Georgia a national leader in innovative alternative energy production," said Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue. "This project, and others like it, will boost economic development in rural Georgia and reduce our state's dependence on foreign oil."

“The state of Georgia has provided us with an excellent opportunity to locate our first plant using its abundant, renewable forest resources as feedstock. Our technology transforms the wood and wood waste from Georgia’s millions of acres of woodlands into ethanol, a key source of transportation fuel,” said Mitch Mandich, CEO of Range Fuels. “Range Fuels’ focus on green, renewable energy will ultimately reduce greenhouse gases, promote energy independence, and create new jobs.”

“Range Fuels groundbreaking on its first commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plant presents an extraordinary opportunity to move the country into the next generation of biofuels that will help improve the environment and secure America’s energy independence,” said Brian Jennings, Executive Vice President for the American Coalition for Ethanol. “Now, more than ever, it is critical for us to pursue clean-burning, homegrown, and cost-effective alternatives to foreign oil. Range Fuels is among the leaders in the biofuels industry and is poised to help us achieve these goals. I congratulate Range Fuels on this important day.”

Via :: Green Progress

New Material Can Store 2x as Much Hydrogen as Convential Storage Material

Virginia (TGW) – Scientists at the University of Virginia have discovered a new class of storage material that is cheaper and more efficient at storing hydrogen as a fuel.

The material absorbs twice as much hydrogen at much more convenient temperatures.

“In terms of hydrogen absorption, these materials could prove a world record,” Adam B. Phillips of the University of Virginia said. “Most materials today absorb only 7 to 8 percent of hydrogen by weight, and only at cryogenic [extremely low] temperatures. Our materials absorb hydrogen up to 14 percent by weight at room temperature. By absorbing twice as much hydrogen, the new materials could help make the dream of a hydrogen economy come true.”

“These materials are the next generation in hydrogen fuel storage materials, unlike any others we have seen before,” Shivaram said. “They have passed every litmus test that we have performed, and we believe they have the potential to have a large impact.”

“The U.Va. Patent Foundation is very excited to be working with a material that one day may be used by millions in everyday life,” said Chris Harris, senior licensing manager for the U.Va. Patent Foundation. “Dr. Phillips and Dr. Shivaram have made an incredible breakthrough in the area of hydrogen absorption.”

Via :: Science Daily

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Oil Watch: 11/05/2007 - 11/10/2007 Prices, Causes and Effects

Closing price: $96.32 per barrel.
National gas average: $3.09

Getting closer to 100… But options on December crude oil futures expire Tuesday, with investors holding many $100 ‘call options’ – which allow traders to buy the underlying futures contract at a predetermined price and date – which could cause prices to rise even higher, because holders of $100 call options will enjoy a payout if prices hit $100.

1. Weak dollar (again)
A lower dollar makes oil cheaper in countries that use other currencies.
2. European output disruptions
9 oil and gas platforms were shut down because of a storm.
3. Shortage fears
Investors fear winter shortages

Gas prices slowly rising, along with heating oil prices. The good news: energy consumption is also on a downward trend.

Friday, November 9, 2007

you know what

just read this article i'm not gonna bother

What Will Global Warming do to Spain? (Pictures)

Before is above, after below.

Credit Guardian

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Update to In Case of Fire

Dan left a comment at DeSmogBlog which added some really funny additions to my 'In Case of Fire' pic:

5. Remember that 450 million years ago, there was more smoke and fire than there is now, and NO houses were lost back then. Do the math.

6. Note that 20,000 years ago, Canada was partially covered with ice, and yet there were still fires, as evidenced by ash deposits. Therefore, fire is not hot.

7. Note that I was the first PhD in Fireology in Canada, which we will pretend is a Doctor of Science, and also I have a degree in thermos fluids. I am always right, and I never lie.

8. The sun is hot. Fire is hot. Need we say more? The real problem is the sun. There is a conspiracy to suppress this information.

9. The house is actually getting cooler. It only seems to be getting warmer because of the urban heat island effect.

10. Gore has smoke alarms in his big house.

Recently Approved New York Wind Turbines to Power 85,000

New York (TGW) – New York approved Noble Environmental Power LLC’s 108 megawatts wind farm today.

A spokeswoman for Noble Environmental said that construction will begin in early 2008 and hopefully be completed by the end of the same year. The cost is estimated to be around $200 million.

There will be 72 wind turbines in total, all in Chateauguy, which will be enough to power around 85,000 homes.

The company estimates economic benefits of around $152.9 million over 20 years.

Via :: Reuters

Fake Climate Study Tricks Skeptics

Internet (TGW) – A hoax scientific study blaming fake CO2-producing bacteria for global warming had some climate skeptics convinced.

Laced with scientific terminology, the report was published in the ‘Journal of Geoclimatic Studies’ which stated that the findings could be ‘the death of manmade global warming theory.’

One British scientist emailed the report to over 2000 colleagues before realizing it was a fake.

Blogger skeptic Neil Craig wrote: "This could not be more damaging to manmade global warming theory ... I somehow doubt if this is going to be on the BBC news."

The anonymous report also ‘found’ that bacteria in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans produced at least 300 times more carbon dioxide than human activity.

"The whole story is a hoax," Deliang Chen, professor of Meteorology at Gothenburg University in Sweden, told Reuters. He said two "authors" listed as from his University were unknown.

Via :: Reuters

California Sues the EPA over Emission Standards!

California (TGW) – California sued the Environmental Protection Agency Thursday, demanding that the state be allowed to limit greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles.

"California is ready to implement the nation's cleanest standards for vehicle emissions, but we cannot do that until the federal government grants a waiver allowing us to enforce those standards," Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said.

The suit follows a 2005 law that requires strict emissions standards.

California needs a waiver from the federal government because it wants to impose stricter standards than those of the federal government.

If the EPA denies the waiver, "we sue again, and sue again, and sue again until we get it," Schwarzenegger said.

The federal agency "has unreasonably delayed action on the requested waiver," according to the lawsuit. "Automotive emissions of greenhouse gases are increasing more rapidly than any other source," the lawsuit said. "The longer the delay in reducing these emissions, the more costly and harmful will be the impact on California."

"We're less than two months away and clearly California is more interested in getting a good headline than in giving us the time to make a good decision," an EPA spokeswoman said.

16 other states are considering or have already adopted laws similar to California’s, and many have joined the lawsuit.

"We are filling the void left by the Bush Administration's refusal to protect the environment," New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said in a statement.

"If the federal government won't lead on this critical issue, it should get out of the way of states like New York that are moving forward with sensible steps to address the climate crisis."

Via :: Reuters

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

In Case of Fire (pic)

The outrageousness of climate 'skeptics':

Posting Schedule

Just to clear things up -
News will be posted every day, so if you come here for green news, come here everyday!
Special reports are posted on Mondays and Wednesdays and occasionally other days, along with Oil Watch on Saturdays and polls on Sundays. So, if you come here for the special reports, come here everyday too!

Car Powered by Chocolate!

Africa (TGW) – Eat chocolate, help the environment and fight global warming.

British firm Ecotec has developed a process in which waste from chocolate producing factories is used to make biofuels.

Waste will be used to power the BioTruck, which will depart on November 26 from England to drive to Africa.

"The chocolate waste used to be used in landfill. But now we can make it travel as biofuel," said organizer Andy Pag who will be one of the two drivers on the trip.

"This is to show that you can have environmentally-friendly biofuels and that you don't have to convert normal diesel engines to use it," Pag said.

Sadly, the car’s exhaust does not smell of chocolate. "No! I'm afraid the exhaust doesn't smell of chocolate," said Pag.

Via :: Reuters

Experts: Global Warming Should be Treated as a Health Issue

Washington (TGW) – Global warming should be treated as a health issue, experts said at a meeting of the America Public Health Association.

Big emitters like the U.S. and China are especially vulnerable.

"There is ... an issue of disproportional vulnerability," Jonathan Patz of the University of Wisconsin said at a news conference. "But ... in the industrialized world, because we live in a globalized economy, an increase in disease anywhere in the world really puts everyone at risk."

Health hazards related to global warming include severe heat, severe droughts, increased smog, and more severe storms.

"Climate change is one of the most serious public health threats facing our nation," said Dr. Georges Benjamin, the association's executive director. "Yet few Americans are aware of the very real consequences of climate change on the health of our communities, our families and our children."

Via :: Reuters

Paradise Threatened by Global Warming

Maldives (TGW) – The President of the islands nation Maldives, Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, called for urgent action against climate change.

The majority of the 1200 islands that make up Maldives are no more than 1 meter above sea level.

"Never in our documented history have so many islands been affected to such an extent. These surges were a grim reminder of the devastating tsunami of 2004 and a clear warning of future disasters," Gayoom said at a conference on development and climate change in Lisbon.

The U.N. estimates 40% of the world’s population lives on the coast.

Via :: Reuters

British Royal Family: Global Warming 'Most important issue facing us'

U.K. (TGW) – Even the British royal family is worried about global warming.

After the Queen of England’s speech yesterday, which announced a climate change bill, Prince Charles reiterated his climate concerns at the Prince of Wales's Business Summit on Climate Change.

He warned that the evidence of climate change is "frightening" and "alarming".

"Doing nothing is simply not an option - it can't be any more, because of the urgency of the situation," he said.

"It must surely be clear by now that the longer we leave it before taking effective action, the more dire the situation will become and the more desperate the measures that will be needed."

"This really is the most important issue facing us as a society and as a species.

"Because, let's be clear, our planet will survive a high degree of climate change.

"Planets do survive. But only one planet, as far as we know, currently has the very precise conditions our species needs to survive. This is the problem.

"Make no mistake about it; we are well on the way to destroying those conditions, and making our planet uninhabitable."

He finished by saying, "This is not about saving the planet. Actually, it's about saving us. That is where each and every one of us has a responsibility to do what we can."

Via :: BBC

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

British Mega Retailer to Implement Tax on Plastic Bags - Why Can't U.S. do the Same?

UK (TGW) – The mega retailer Marks and Spencers will introduce a 5p charge for plastic grocery bags, the company said this week.

The move follows a successful trial in North Ireland, where plastic bag usage dropped 66%. In the Republic of Ireland, there is a flat plastic bag tax which has led to a 90% reduction in plastic bag use.

"Our initial trial in Northern Ireland has shown us that introducing charging does make customers think twice about the number of bags they use," chief executive Stuart Rose said.

The company plans to first begin with the charge in 33 of its South London stores.

For the first three weeks of the trial, free M&S Bags for Life will be given away.

Via :: Guardian

Monday, November 5, 2007

A Solar Market Bubble?

Japan (TGW) - The world’s number 2 maker of polycrystalline silicon is warning of a possible solar bubble.

The solar market has been expanding rapidly, with the price of silicon rising as well. Solar panel shortages are common because of the same shortage of silicon.

"Demand for solar power will grow, but we really don't know by how much," Managing Director Yukio Muranaga said. "It's too early to commit to more investment at this stage."

But the company is researching a new process that will aid them tremendously: vapor-to-liquid deposition.

"We are looking five years, 10 years ahead," he said, saying governments are likely to need to balance their environmental policies. "Solar cells require charcoal, which comes from trees. Producing too many solar cells means deforestation and that just defeats the purpose of green energy."

Via :: Reuters

Steamroller Crushes 10,000 Energy Inefficient Lightbulbs

This happened a couple of months ago (April), but it's still pretty cool:

Steamroller Crushes 10,000 Energy Inefficient Lightbulbs

Sunday, November 4, 2007

TGW is Hiring!

We're hiring!

If you're interested in climate science, global warming, renewable energy, or anything like that, please contact Simmons (AKA me) at worldthoughts (at)

Sadly, we do not pay, probably because TGW is ad-free. We will give you any credit you'd like though.

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Saturday, November 3, 2007

Oil Watch: 10/29/2007 - 11/03/2007 - Prices, Causes, and Effects

Closing price
: $95.93 per barrel.
National gas average: $2.97

Prices continue to rise…

1. Weak dollar (again)
A lower dollar makes oil cheaper in countries that use other currencies.
2. Nigerian output disruptions (again)
A rebel attack struck an oil rig. (again)
3. Shortage fears
Investors fear winter shortages

Gas prices slowly rising, along with heating oil prices.

Friday, November 2, 2007

New York may Take Action Against Plastic Bags

New York (TGW) – New York may soon begin cracking down on plastic bags in large retailers.

A proposed law introduced Monday requires stores larger than 5,000 square feet to set up an in-store recycling program and sell reusable bags. Stores would be required to use bags printed with a reminder to consumers: "Please return this bag to a participating store for recycling."

Approximately 700 food stores plus large retailers would have to comply with this law.

"We think this strikes the right balance between conscience and convenience," said Councilman Peter Vallone, a co-sponsor of the bill, which needs approval from the city council and environmentally minded Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Even though plastic bags are horrible for the environment, millions are used every day.

Via :: Reuters

Thursday, November 1, 2007

IBM to Recycle Silicon to Aid the Silicon Shortage of the Solar Industry

New York (TGW) – IBM said this week it has developed a silicon wafer recycling system.

It estimates that the silicon from the discarded wafers could generate 13.5 megawatts of solar energy.

This comes as a relief to the solar power industry, which, with grow, has caused a refined silicon shortage.

"One of the challenges facing the solar industry is a severe shortage of silicon, which threatens to stall its rapid growth," Charles Bai, chief financial officer of Chinese solar company ReneSola, said in a statement about the IBM recycling. "This is why we have turned to reclaimed silicon materials sourced primarily from the semiconductor industry to supply the raw material our company needs."

Via :: Reuters