Showing posts with label "green" investment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label "green" investment. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

19 of the Greatest Ocean Heroes

See the men and women who have been on the frontlines of protecting our blue world. One will win a 2010 Heart of Green Award.By Brian Clark HowardBuzz up! 1 of 20

26 Real People Making a Real DifferenceWho Will Win a Heart of Green Award?The 13 Most Endangered Sea CreaturesAmazing Wildlife PhotosHow to Start a Garden
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Wallace J. Nichols
As David Rockefeller, Jr. recently told The Daily Green, "Ninety-five percent of environmental conservation efforts go to the land, with only five percent left for oceans. Yet 71% of the globe is covered by oceans." Seen from space, Earth is a blue marble.

To bring this concept home, sea turtle researcher and conservationist Wallace "J." Nichols, PhD started the Blue Marbles Project, a global initiative that asks participants to pass along a blue marble to someone they see expressing care for the oceans. So far 60,000 marbles have been shared, and the stories have been told via social media and other outlets. Nichols was recommended to TDG by two members of our Facebook community. He is a research associate with the California Academy of Sciences and is the founder of OceanRevolution.org. "We ocean lovers need to be the voice for the ocean," Nichols told TDG.
photo credit: Neil Ever Osborne/neileverosborne.com

keywords: wallace j nichols, wallace nichols, blue marble project, oceans, environmentalists, scientists, researchers, water


Read more: http://www.thedailygreen.com/environmental-news/latest/ocean-heroes-460410#ixzz0leQR2lbh

Friday, April 16, 2010

For eco-friendly surfboard shapers, more kelp in the lineup

PHOTOS: Eco-friendly surfboards Image 1 of 5
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Joey Santley and Raz Raisbeck
( Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times )

Joey Santley watches Raz Raisbeck shape a foam surfboard blank at the Lost Surfboards factory in San Clemente. The surfboard company makes some of its boards from Santley's recycled foam dust blanks.
See full story

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-surfboard-pictures,0,861510.photogallery

Friday, August 14, 2009

Alcoa and their positively "green" actions

The growing standard of living in newly developed and heavily populated parts of the world is driving a relentless need for new infrastructure and consumer goods. At the same time the human footprint on the planet has a far greater impact on fragile ecosystems than ever before.

Alcoa is meeting the challenge with a core commitment to operating sustainably in the communities and ecosystems in which we do business. At the same time, we're delivering new ideas and solutions that will help build a healthier and more sustainable future both for the planet and its people.

Solutions that help buildings, cars, airplanes, trucks and trains get more performance from less fuel. Solutions that help ......http://www.alcoa.com/global/en/eco_alcoa/eco_overview.asp

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Bottled Water Carries Hidden Cost to Earth

Good for You, Bad for Mother Earth? | $1.79 might seem like a small price to pay for a bottle of water. But it costs the Earth far more than that.

Compared to a liter of tap water, producing a liter of bottled water requires as much as 2,000 times more energy, according to the first analysis of its kind. The study also found that our nation's bottled water habit sucked up the equivalent of 32 to 54 million barrels of oil last year.

"The bottom line is that we should understand better the implications of our choices," said Peter Gleick, president of the Pacific Institute for Studies in Development, Environment, and Security in Oakland, Calif. "It suggests more ways to reduce energy use than maybe we otherwise think of."

Bottled water is a big business that is rapidly getting bigger. From 1976 to 2007, the average amount of bottled water drunk per person per year in the United States jumped from about 6 liters (1.6 gallons) to 116 liters (30.6 gallons).

In 2007, the last year for which numbers are available, Americans purchased more than 33 billion liters of bottled water. Globally, the number was 200 billion liters.

Even just since 2001, bottled water sales have increased by 70 percent in the U.S. We now buy more bottled water than either milk or beer.

But as consumption has gone up, so too have worries about what our drinking habits might be doing to the environment.

"It's a big deal," Gleick said. "And yet, no one had looked at all of the energy that goes into it. We didn't know."

To find out, he and a colleague considered three case studies: water that was bottled and used in Los Angeles; water bottled in the South Pacific and sent by cargo ship to L.A.; and water bottled in France and shipped in various ways to L.A. For each scenario, the researchers looked at all the energy involved in collecting, treating, bottling, labeling, packaging, cooling, and transporting the liquid.

Bottled Water Carries Hidden Cost to Earth
Emily Sohn, Discovery News e-mail share bookmark print

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For water that is consumed near its source, producing PET plastic bottles is the most energy-intensive step, according to their results, which appeared in the journal Environmental Research Letters. For bottles that make longer trips, transportation has the biggest impact.

In other words, buying water that was bottled near your home rather than in places like Fiji can help reduce your carbon footprint. Better yet, Gleick said, put away your wallet and turn on the faucet instead.

"We have very good tap water in this country," he said. "It's cheap. It's readily available. And it's much lower in energy use."

The research also shows how simple choices can have a significant impact on the environment.

"One of the conclusions we can all draw from this study is that novel materials and low-carbon energy can help," said Daniel Kammen, co-director of the Berkeley Institute of the Environment at the University of California, Berkeley. "But our own behavior is critical to cutting down not just physical waste, but also carbon waste."

Friday, March 27, 2009

Stimulus money starts flowing for Green Tech

After weeks of supportive words from the president, U.S. green-tech professionals saw something else this week: money starting to flow.

The Department of Energy said last Friday that it expects to provide $535 million in loans to California start-up Solyndra, which has a novel design for rooftop solar arrays. The alternative-energy loan, the first of its kind in four years from the DOE, is a positive sign for the finance-challenged green-tech industry, investors and entrepreneurs said this week.

"I'm happy to see our government supporting advanced research initiatives particularly in regards to energy because the country needs it," said John Walecka, a founding partner at RedPoint Ventures, one of the investors in Solyndra.

"The government doesn't have any intention of running businesses. But from what I can see, they are sophisticated and thoughtful in how to structure deals--that's very clear," he said.

Because of the troubled credit markets, the DOE program has become the "provider of last resort" to companies that need financing to expand and build manufacturing plants, said venture capital investor Paul Holland of Foundation Capital, who was in Washington this week at a meeting of energy professionals at the White House.

Energy Secretary Steven Chu has revamped the DOE's loan-vetting process to break the logjam of these loans, which many high-profile green-tech start-ups such as Tesla Motors and battery maker A123 Systems have applied for. Meanwhile, the government's economic stimulus plan calls for $1.6 billion for research through the national laboratories and for investments to bulk up and modernize the transmission grid to transport solar and wind power.

In anticipation of a big inflow of money, green business people have reported spending a lot of time in Washington, D.C. Everyone--from small start-ups to established wind project developers--is hiring lobbyists to influence policy.

"If you just take wind, every developer in the country will be knocking on the DOE's door and asking to get a piece of the pie," Jim Barry, chief executive of renewable energy project developer NTR said at the Jefferies Global Clean Technology conference in New York earlier this month. "The higher quality projects will rise to the top."

Wind and solar benefit
Businesses involved in building large wind farms or solar projects will directly benefit from stimulus spending, according to investors. Companies that sell smart-grid equipment and software to utilities, meanwhile, could benefit indirectly from investments to modernize the grid.

In the short term, loans and changes in the way the federal government subsidizes renewable energy will help finance projects that might have been stalled because a lack of tax equity, Kevin Walsh, managing director of renewable energy at GE Energy Financial Services, said at the Jefferies conference. Utilities are also expected to invest in their own renewable energy projects, rather than rely on third parties.


Solyndra's rooftop solar arrays are made up of hundreds of tube-shaped solar cells. Will more green start-ups get government assistance this year?

(Credit: Solyndra)But even with the hefty commitment to clean energy in the stimulus plan, many of the rules surrounding those policies still need to be worked out, Walsh said. He called the current period "the implementation phase" and noted that there is more energy-related legislation in the works, including an expected energy bill this year and climate regulations.

Depending on the industry within green tech, the financial impact from stimulus-related investments won't necessarily be felt this year, Mark Bachman, an equity analyst with Pacific Crest Securities, said in a research note Monday.

"Investors should expect neither loans for renewable energy, manufacturing facilities and transmission projects nor matching smart grid and facility construction grants to add materially to 2009 expectations. The lion's share of these funds will be released in 2010 and impact sales and EPS (earning per share) in late 2010 and beyond," Bachman wrote.

Government-funded bubble?
In all, the stimulus plan has $39 billion in direct investments through the DOE and another $20 billion in tax incentives, Obama said earlier this week. The challenge with implementing these policies is setting subsidies at the right level to promote nascent industries without funding flawed companies, said Paul Clegg, an equity analyst from Jefferies.


"There is a risk that we overstimulate or we keep some of the wrong companies in business," he said. "We're likely to see a lot of boom and bust cycles and, as a result, a lot of volatility."

Even though the DOE made a point in acting quickly by approving a loan to Solyndra, bureaucratic delays or mismanagement are another risk.

"Any time you have a big new initiative, you have to assume a certain amount of waste and a certain amount of mistakes," Foundation Capital's Holland said. "However, directionally, these are really the right things for the country."
Martin LaMonica is a senior writer

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Will Green Funding Be Harder to Come By?

As the year wraps up on a gloomy economic forecast, people are wondering what will become of the green initiatives set forth by hundreds of organizations and governments as cash becomes harder to come by.

Despite the negative outlook on the market, many expect green initiatives (and the funding for them) to continue to grow, according to a survey released by SunTrust Bank Private Wealth Management. The study surveyed more than 200 business owners, with at least $10 million in annual revenue, about their outlook on "green" giving and investing.

Of those surveyed:

69 percent responded positively to the statement, "Even if there is an economic downturn that moderately affects my business, I plan to maintain my current level of giving to environmental causes in the coming year."
Most survey respondents believe it is a "good" or "average" time to invest in mutual funds or other financial instruments that are specifically marketed as "green" or environmentally responsible.
40 percent of respondents believe it is a "good time" for all businesses to adhere to the highest possible environmental standards.
59 percent believe that a "green" investment would generate a rate of return similar to any other fund.
Nearly half said their company had an official "green" policy that included recycling, energy saving plans and other measures.
Almost half of the business owners donated personal money to organizations devoted to helping the environment.
"The survey shows that business owners recognize that environmental stewardship can have genuine bottom-line results," says Dave Johnston, senior vice president, 45 percent of business owners surveyed believe that the earth's environment is slowly deteriorating.

47 percent characterized the health of the earth's environment as "fair."
30 percent cited it as "good."
18 percent called the environment's health "poor."
Only 5 percent deemed it "excellent."
"In the surveys we have conducted over the past year, we have found business owners give altruistically and abundantly," added Johnston. "This survey indicates that business owners consider it a priority to take action based on their personal concerns about changes in the world around them."

Other concerns motivating executives to invest in the earth included pollution and energy policy, a personal desire to make positive changes in the world and past performance of a particular investment fund.

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