Meters Are Getting Smarter, But Are They Secure?

The wonder of the Internet – its ability to provide both instant and constant access to data – is merging with our electricity meters and with the appliances inside our homes as the vision of the new, improved, smart grid comes into focus. But, just as with the dawn of the Internet, the smart meter … Continued

Increasing Ethanol in Gasoline Equals Diaster

Adding more corn-based ethanol into gasoline will create a higher demand for corn, which will raise the price of corn. In short, it’s a recipe for disaster, according to three recent studies. A study by Advanced Economics Solutions concluded that corn prices “will be much higher and more volatile” if corn-based ethanol production increases. If … Continued

Can Complimentary Currencies Stimulate the Economy at Large?

By Lisa Bingham Economics is all about connecting our needs or wants with resources. Most of us associate that exchange as happening with the exchange of dollars for goods, but there are alternatives. I attended a fascinating session at the BALLE conference last week called “Bartering and Complimentary Currencies.” This was a new concept for … Continued

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon Speaks at the World Business Summit on Climate Change in Copenhagen

Secretary General Ban Ki-moon addressed a gathering of global business leaders last week in Copenhagen for the World Summit on Climate Change. As the international community prepares for the COP-15 talks this December, Ki-moon called on business leaders to “lead by example” with ingenuity and vision that others, “including governments,” lack. Secretary General Ki-moon characterized … Continued

Are Women the “Greener Gender”?

WNSF West Coast Summit Explores the Convergence of Businesswomen, Technology and Sustainability Silicon Valley’s businesswomen gathered on Thursday, May 21, at the Intel Headquarters in Santa Clara to discuss the topic of “Clean Tech’s Advantage for Growth.” The gathering was the first West Coast Summit held by the Women’s Network for a Sustainable Future (WNSF). … Continued

American Clean Energy & Security Act: Sending the Wrong Signals

The American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 shaping up in the US Congress does indeed address the latter. Unfortunately the effectiveness of King Coal and Big Oil massive lobbying and public PR campaigns has turned the bill into a “Subsidize Oil and Coal” as opposed to “Clean Energy and Climate Change” legislation.

Richmond, CA, Living a Green Economic Revolution

California has had 4 “rushes”. First was the Pioneer land grab, followed by the gold rush, then the information rush of the dot-com era, and now, finally, the green rush. I’m thrilled to say it’s not confined to Berkeley, San Francisco, Oakland, and Silicon Valley. Last week, I wrote about the city of Richmond, California, … Continued

Climate Change: Developed and Developing Nations Share the Burden of Change

On Wednesday, The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) released a first draft of a treaty to replace the Kyoto Protocol (1997) which is set to expire in 2012. This new 53 page document is considered to be the basis for the agreements to be made in the international climate talks scheduled for December … Continued

Pedestrian Plaza Reclaims Pavement for People

It’s been popular in New York and other places where open space is at a premium, so San Francisco figured, “eh, why not?” The first reclamation of street space to create a pedestrian plaza opened last week on San Francisco’s famous Castro Street at the intersection with 17th St. It’s a small space, maybe 1000 … Continued

Cruising’s Dark and Dirty Not-So-Secret

All those brilliant white cruise ships steaming on the world’s oceans carry a lot more than vacationing passengers. They also carry loads of pollution. The international ocean environmental group, Oceana, reports that pollution from cruise ships is a growing problem. That’s an understatement. One example: Except for California and Alaska, “lax state and federal anti-pollution … Continued

A Head Start on Climate and Energy – On the Ground in Germany

Part one in a series of reports looking at Germany’s energy and climate policies, and how they might serve as a model for the U.S. and internationally I spent last week in Germany as a guest of the German Foreign Ministry. Part of an international group of 12 other writers, television broadcasters, journalists, and bloggers, … Continued

PR Battle Over Cap-and-Trade Reaches a Fevered Pitch

Oil and coal companies — the most vocal opponents of US cap-and-trade climate legislation — have spent more than $76 million over the last four months on public relations and mass advertising trying to to defeat the climate bill now before the House Energy and Commerce Committee. When you combine that incredible sum with money … Continued

What Is the Best Way to Reduce Carbon Emissions?

When President Obama released his budget, he included a “cap-and-refund” proposal that strictly limits greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and would auction emissions permits to large companies. The price of fossil-fuel based energy will increase. However, Obama’s plan also includes giving refunds to taxpayers which will come from the auctions. Seventy percent of state regulators surveyed … Continued