CleanTech Opportunities and Trends
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CleanTech Opportunities and Trends
A collection of articles and perspectives in the broad CleanTech space. CleanTech is more than just alternative energy.
Curated by Phil Dillard
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To Obama & EPA: Innovative NRDC Plan Featuring Federal-State Partnership Saves Americans More Than $25 Billion In Climate And Health Costs While Unleashing Billions In Clean Energy Investments

To Obama & EPA: Innovative NRDC Plan Featuring Federal-State Partnership Saves Americans More Than $25 Billion In Climate And Health Costs While Unleashing Billions In Clean Energy Investments | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

This report is bound to cause trouble for those who hate the EPA. I have not read it yet but with the implementation of carbon caps in CA, this is yet another shot across the bow for policies on carbon and fossil fuels. This is a good thing.

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New soap bottles partially sourced from ocean plastic | Greener Package

New soap bottles partially sourced from ocean plastic | Greener Package | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

This is a great step in the right direction. I plan to meet with execs at Method soon to discuss the potential for use of Mango Materials' biodegradable plastic created from waste methane (www.mangomaterials.com) plastic as another potential source. Here is a great opporutnity to vote for cleaner oceans and more responsible use of plastic. I use the Method products at home, and they work really well. Better Chemistry + Better Packaging = Great Business. Check it out!

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Mike Biddle- MBA Polymers - We can recycle plastic

Mike Biddle is  a great entrepreneur who I met recently. He informes us that less than 10% of plastic trash is recycled, compared to almost 90% of metals, but his growing company has developed a solution to this problem. Take a look at his TED talk. It is 11 minutes well spent.

 

http://www.ted.com

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View inspires with sunglasses for windows - San Francisco Business Times

View inspires with sunglasses for windows - San Francisco Business Times | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

Building owners and investors love the idea of energy efficiency and LEED certifications, but they need their investments to pay off in a short period of times (i.e. 2-3 years). They also consider the entire "building envelope" in their analysis of their energy efficiency gains, making decisions on lighting versus water, new power and cooling systems, and also glazings or coatings for windows. View has the potential to make a huge impact on this market. Keep an eye out on this company...and additional techologies that should inevitably follow to compete in a huge potentially highly lucrative market.

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Venture capitalists back off “traditional” cleantech

Venture capitalists back off “traditional” cleantech | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

This is an interesting trend, but it does not mean that IT is the only way to make CleanTech work. I've actually talked with the founders of GreenStart on this issue. The GreenStart pivot is one solution. However, another solution is innovation. Innovation in the way that such companies are financed, innovation in the way that companies test and learn, innovation in the way projects are selected and markets are accessed. The technologies selected must solve problems that exist today for consumers and corporations. The technologies invested in must be somewhat capital efficient, and economically viable without subsidy. This is the world we are building.

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Missippi Refinery Turns Wood into Gas

Missippi Refinery Turns Wood into Gas | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

Renewable fuels can come from several different stocks including waste, algae and food stocks. As we know from the drought this summer, creating fuel from food sources can have ripple effects when there is not enough food (in this case corn) to meet the demand. However, this company has a process to use wood as its feedstock. Pay close attention to the other companies mentioned in this article. All-of-the-above is an implicit energy strategy by big energy companies.

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“The Greener the Industry, the Higher the Job Growth Rate over the Last Decade,” Report Finds

“The Greener the Industry, the Higher the Job Growth Rate over the Last Decade,” Report Finds | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

The headline says it all. I've not drilled through the numbers in painstaking detail, but the commen-sense of this analysis makes sense as well. The need for sustainable solutions in business practices becomes more manifest to me every day.

 

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A123 Bankruptcy Update: Wanxiang, Johnson, Fisker Spar in Court : Greentech Media

A123 Bankruptcy Update: Wanxiang, Johnson, Fisker Spar in Court : Greentech Media | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

I don't know a ton about the A123 bankruptcy, but what I do see reveals that despite their challenges as a business, there is a lot of value in the technology they have developed. Moreover, to have US industry be able to compete globally, companies need to figure out how to do it right.

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Hertz Ramps Up Tire Recycling, Promises Zero Tires to Landfills

Hertz Ramps Up Tire Recycling, Promises Zero Tires to Landfills | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

This is another great example of the impact of CleanTech and Sustainability developments. I hope to explore the positive financial impact to Hertz of their sustainbility program as well as the positive environmental and economic impacts of tire recycling and the applications described in the article. There are a number of companies who are trying to turn what was once considered waste into a business opportunity. Turning these tires back into fuel should be one of the last things we consider doing.

 

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Common Misconceptions About Recycling Plastic

Common Misconceptions About Recycling Plastic | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

This article is interesting in that it highlights some of the unknowns about recycling. However, they are short on the details of more of the solutions that are out there. Bioplastics help address the landfill and ocean waste concerns, while creative solutions like plastic to fuel (Agilyx) or plastic to new, higher value uses (e.g. Green Toys use of recycled plastic milk jugs to create children's toys) exist. Mango Materials sustainbly uses waste methane to create pure PHB - a bioplastic that is completely biodegradable, ocean degradable and free of harmful chemicals. Consumers should know more, and demand more from their product manufacturers.

 

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GELI's battery operating system is here - Android for Energy Storage

GELI's battery operating system is here - Android for Energy Storage | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

GELI offers an operating system to manage energy storage. Early stage development is in progress for this GreenStart alumni.

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The Flaring of Energy Freedom : Biofuels Digest

The Flaring of Energy Freedom : Biofuels Digest | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

Siluria is a company that takes harmful methane gas (normally flared or burned) and turns it into ethylene using a bio-based process. This is one of several interesting, cutting edge solutions for managing this harmful GHG.

 

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Over 600 MW Of New Solar Installed In Germany In October (YTD = Almost 7,000 MW)

Over 600 MW Of New Solar Installed In Germany In October (YTD = Almost 7,000 MW) | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

 
The Germans just keep on going. I have to wonder what the American economy would look like if we actually committed to an energy policy. Everyone knows that this would not eliminate fossil fuels, but it could significantly change our geopolitical issues, create domestic jobs and have a positive environmental impact.

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UChicago helps launch energy hub at Argonne National Laboratory | Harris School of Public Policy Studies

UChicago helps launch energy hub at Argonne National Laboratory | Harris School of Public Policy Studies | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

Energy storage is a critical issue for strengtheing domestic infrastructure and adding more renewable energy to the equation. Stay tuned for more information.

 

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Weighing The Prospects Of The Keystone XL Pipeline : NPR

Great job Sara Lattislaw & NPR. They do a great job of summarizing the heart of the Keystone Pipeline. While it is very feasible to deliver this pipeline and this type of energy, we really need to consider what the long-term impacts will be. If you read my earlier post about the refinement and production of gasoline, you understand why a lot of this gas and diesel will not make it into US markets. Wherever you stand on this issue, this is 5 minutes worth listening to. We urgently need to think about national security, energy policy and our environment - now, more than ever.

 

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SolarCity announces largest rooftop military housing project - San Francisco Business Times

The DOD gets it. The DOD has a goal of reaching 25% renewables by 2025. Not only does this investment create jobs and reduce dependence on fossil fuels, but it also helps bring military installations one step closer to being able to be independent of the domestic power grid - another long term benefit. We should note that installation of distributed, renewable power creates several layers of jobs while reducing the GHG emissions (assuming of course the panels and inverters are manufactured in a sustainable, low-emissions way). Operations and maintenance of this equipment creates jobs that remain after the installation is complete. I don't yet have details on the difference between the number and types of jobs that a smart, renewable energy infrastructure would have as opposed to the existing one, but that is an analysis that is probably out there, or should be undertaken.

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Global Warming Gas Affects Orbiting Satellites & Space Junk, Study Shows

Global Warming Gas Affects Orbiting Satellites & Space Junk, Study Shows | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

While there are a number of reports that indicate the changes in the lower atmosphere, this one is interesting in its analysis of the outer atmosphere. Since ours is the only atmosphere we kno of that can support us, we should be aware of what we can do to protect it.

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Gasoline Prices Near 4-Month Lows, Likely Going Lower

An interesting impact of decreased demand and seasonality = lower gas prices. Remember, there is a global market for oil and gas.

 

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The Future of Coal Shows Continued Decline

The Future of Coal Shows Continued Decline | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

Corporate responsibility watchdog, As You Sow, just released an update to their 2011 white paper on The Financial Risks of Investments in Coal. The paper identifies financial risks associated with both mining and burning coal that have come about as the result of emerging trends in the utility industry. These shifts are driving demand away from coal as its overhead costs increase even as the costs of alternatives, including both natural gas and wind, continue to fall. This trend is underscored by the recent bankruptcy filing of Patriot Coal.

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Water Delivery Accounts for 12.6 Percent of U.S. Energy Consumption: Report

Water Delivery Accounts for 12.6 Percent of U.S. Energy Consumption: Report | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

This report shows how expensive it is to transport water in the US to where it is needed. It could be foundational to the analysis of different water conservation and energy efficiency initiatives that CleanTech companies might undertake.

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DOE Lab Cooks Up Rare Earth Recycling With Molten Metals

DOE Lab Cooks Up Rare Earth Recycling With Molten Metals | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

This DOE program provides and interesting insight into the future. MBA Polymers has been developing its processes for plastics recycling for over 20 years. There are now many large e-waste recyclers, and I expect the number to grow. We should continue to track and license such emerging technologies, and create profitable businesses and domestic manufacturing jobs from such effective government research.

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2012 World Technology Award Winner Recycles But Isn't Green

2012 World Technology Award Winner Recycles But Isn't Green | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

Agilix turns traditional plastic into crude oil. One possible (but not so green) solution for hard to recycle plastics.

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A Sad Green Story - New York Times

A Sad Green Story - New York Times | CleanTech Opportunities and Trends | Scoop.it

David Brooks posts his perspective on CleanTech. While disappointments exist, so do huge opportunities from companies and technologies that dom't require subsidies to be successful. People should be talking about that part of the story.

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