Green Building 101: Tapping into Geothermal Riches

If using a banking analogy for the untapped and clean geothermal energy our planet provides, we discover that the world lives on top of a remarkable energy safe deposit vault. In 2008, geothermal power supplied less than one percent of the world’s energy. However by 2050 it is anticipated that geothermal power will meet between 10 and 20 percent of the world’s energy requirements, according to a report from Renewable Energy World.

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ABB Commissions World Energy Survey

Energy and power technology engineering leader, ABB, has launched what it hopes will be a far-reaching survey that addresses some key energy issues today. The company recently commissioned the Bloomsberg Businesssweek Research Services survey of energy professionals, in order to document their perspectives on key energy issues facing the world today.

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Part 3: Other Non-Gas Portable Power Alternatives

We have written about some interesting portable power generating options available by plugging into the sun or from pedaling a stationary bicycle. We now look at some of the other options that might be considered “a little farther out there.” This list includes a portable wind generator and a hydro-powered backpack.

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Off the Grid by Nick Rosen Explores Freedom from the Tyranny of Hyper-Consumerism

As someone idealizes the idea of living off the grid, Off the Grid, writtenby Nick Rosenoffers an eye opening experience of what it really means to get off the hamster wheel. Rosen, a journalist and a documentary film maker, travels around the US to meet off the grid residents who rely on themselves solely for their energy and living needs. Due to the lack of faith in the government and plugging into the mainstream way of life, off-gridders take matters into their own hands, literally and philosophically.

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How the Recession Means More Green Buildings (and Why That’s Good for the Economy)

Can a bad economy save the planet? Let’s be honest, construction companies and home builders are facing terrible times. New building construction has ground to a halt and the subprime mortgage fiasco resulted in plummeting home values, leaving many builders with homes that were worth less than the cost of construction. The longer the recession – some say through 2010, some say longer – the more companies will have to lay off employees or go under altogether. There’s not…

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New York City Goes Green with an Eco-Friendly Billboard this Holiday Season

As alternative energy continues to be the hot topic in our flailing economy, New York City sets an environmental example by launching Times Square’s first 100 percent eco-powered billboard.

The billboard powered entirely by wind and sun, is the first such sign in New York City. It will be erected by Ricoh Company, Ltd., a Japanese company that strives to be outstanding in all areas of the environment, society, and the economy.

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A Financial Stimulus Package that Pays for Your Photovoltaic System?

Could the economic downturn hurt the green movement? Thomas L. Friedman, the Pulitzer Prize winning columnist of the New York Times, breaks down the possibility in today’s Bailout (and Buildup) of a tight economy and lower fuel prices leading to a greater reliance on foreign oil and a postponement of a national switch to cleaner energy. It is understandable that economic worries have pushed environmental worries to the background for most Americans, but as Friedman points out, a financial stimulus…

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The Future of Home Solar Power: Costs, Tax Breaks, and Return on Investment

It’s a Bright New Day for Home Solar Hidden in the fine print of the massive Wall Street Bailout bill that was signed into law last week was a tax credit extension that had alternative energy companies, especially makers of home solar systems, dancing with joy. Instead of losing the federal tax credit at the end of the year, which seemed likely until Wall Street forced Congress to stay in session longer, consumers who install photovoltaic systems will now receive…

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Senate Bailout Plan Could be Boon for Alternative Energies, Home Solar

Lost in the economic and political circus of the recent weeks was the failure of congress to extend tax credits for alternative energy companies and homeowners who install solar-power systems. Both the Senate and the House wrote similar bills extending the tax credits and lifting the cap for residential solar-power installation. Until the end of this year, homeowners can receive a federal tax credit of 30% of the cost of a solar-power system, capped at $2,000. With that cap lifted,…

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Photovoltaics and Firefighters

Safety concerns are going to start being an issue with alternative energy installations. With any new technology come unanticipated concerns, as that system leaves the ideal world of the drawing board (or the computer simulation) and enters the real world. We are already well acquainted with the concerns about wind turbines and birds (for the most part, the issue of bird strikes is not that great compared to other man-made hazards for birds, and is more than offset by the…

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