feat-jan13-trade

Cap & Trade for CO2: Great Solution or Not?

Annie Leonard’s Story of Cap & Trade, which we wrote about a while back, throws a critical and generally dismissive eye on the concept of a cap & trade solution for carbon emissions. The film argues that such a solution is at best a distraction from real cuts in fossil fuel use, and at worst … Continued

IT Leaders Set Major Efficiency Goals with Green Touch

Bell Labs, Alcatel-Lucent’s research arm, is spearheading a major research consortium, called Green Touch, which includes academic and government-funded research labs, telecommunications service providers and chip makers. The organizations are putting their efforts toward creating technologies needed to make communications networks 1,000 times more energy efficient than they are today. The effort was announced today … Continued

EPA Backtracks on Mountaintop Coal Mining

Just when you thought it might be safe to go hiking in West Virginia’s mountains or along its streams, the EPA apparently has caved to the interests of Big Coal by signing off on one Clean Water Act permit for a mountaintop coal mining project in that state and preparing the way for the eventual … Continued

Cape Wind Controversy Hits New Low, Illustrates Cost of NIMBYism

I have immense respect for Robert F Kennedy Jr, and have been frequently moved by his outstanding speeches on big-picture environmental topics. I’m not alone, however, in continuing to be surprised and baffled at the Kennedy tradition of steadfastly opposing the Cape Wind turbine project, the first major offshore wind energy project in the US, … Continued

Check Please! Government Picks Up Tab, Starts Caring about Triple Bottom Line

There is a lot of controversy over the Health Care Bill. Although agreement on how to deal with the state of health care is lacking, many Americans agree that there are issues that need to be corrected. As Canadian conservative commentator David Frum argues, “The U.S. health care system costs too much, delivers too little … Continued

Do We Need Green Authoritarianism?

On Saturday the Chinese legislature passed an amendment to a 2006 renewable energy law that requires utilities to buy power from renewable sources, if it is available. The amendment should provide a major boost to renewable energy development for the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases. The new legislation is also an example of how … Continued

Climate Change Like You’ve Never Seen

A riveting photo essay of images depicting climate change was recently published online. The essay, produced by Magnum in Motion and commissioned by the United Nations Development Program, is based on information found in the latest UNDP report. What I like the most about this photo essay is the emphasis placed on promoting assistance to developing countries. … Continued

China Produces More Cars than the U.S.

It’s true: The latest figures from the U.S. Department of Transportation show that China surpassed the U.S. last year in the total number of cars produced. This is a radical shift from 1980, when the U.S. manufactured 56 times more vehicles than China. In 2008, China produced 9.5 million vehicles, while the U.S. produced 8.7 … Continued

EPA’s Gift to Maritime Industry: Stringent Emission Regs

Just in time for holiday gift-giving season the Environmental Protection Agency wrapped-up final regulations that slap stringent emission control standards on ocean vessels and marine diesel engines. And this is one gift the maritime industry can’t return or exchange. The EPA this week finalized a rule it proposed in July that sets stringent engine and … Continued

feat-dec23-gas

Drill Baby, Drill: Environmentalists Conflicted Over Natural Gas

Be careful what you wish for. Now that environmental concerns are getting attention at the highest levels, new fractures are opening up within the “movement” — if it can still be called that — over nuclear power, carbon trading, and now natural gas. When Robert F. Kennedy Jr. spoke this fall at Solar Power International, … Continued

feat-dec21-plane

U.S. Airlines Sue to Avoid EU Carbon Caps

American Airlines, Continental and United Airlines have joined with the Air Transport Association (ATA) in suing the U.K. over that country’s planned implementation of EU emissions trading schemes (ETS), according to Business Week. The airlines and ATA sued the U.K. Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change December 16th in British court, saying the … Continued

The Copenhagen Communique: An Entrepreneur’s Perspective

What does the Copenhagen Communique mean to an entrepreneur? Am I being too blunt to suggest the answer is “nothing?” Entrepreneurs are focused on their customers as the source of inspiration and profits. Laws passed by politicians receive entrepreneurial attention only when they impact their customers’ ability to buy or their cost of operations. The … Continued

Los Angeles: The New Electric Car Launchpad?

The unthinkable has happened. Los Angeles plans on resurrecting the city’s 400 abandoned electric vehicle charging stations that have been collecting dust for the past nine years, and to also add one hundred more, its mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa, announced early this month at the LA Auto Show. In addition, the city plans to offer incentives … Continued

New Study: How Soon Can We Expect Wide Benefits from Plug-In Hybrids?

With GM’s Volt and Toyota’s Plug-In Prius coming to the market within the next two years, how soon can we expect plug-in hybrids to deliver on their social and ecological benefits? A new study by the National Academy of Sciences projects significant fuel savings and emissions reductions by 2030. Is this soon enough? Some say … Continued

feat-dec14-laird

An Interview with Gordon Laird, Author of “The Price of a Bargain”

Gordon Laird’s new book, The Price of a Bargain: The Quest for Cheap and the Death of Globalization, looks at the global forces that have given rise to cheap goods. In the process, he identifies a series of instabilities that will very likely bring this phase of cheap consumer goods to a close, while also … Continued