Friday, October 15, 2010

Sustainable Development Weekly Updates Oct 08 - Oct 15 - Justmeans

All Electric Buses En Route To Sustainable Development - Robert Moskowitz

All-electric buses are coming to a bus stop near you -- or at least, nearer than ever before.

China has led the way in electric bus utilization for many years, but now bus companies in the U.S. are testing and accepting a variety of all-electric transit vehicles. The relatively sleek, smooth buses offer the potential to save vast sums of operating expenses over the typical bus' operating life.

One reason electric buses are now appearing on local streets in the U.S. is that their batteries can be charged in just a few minutes, instead of the hours required by older energy-storage technologies.

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Sustainable Development Efforts Yield World's First Zero-Carbon City - Robert Moskowitz

Masdar City, the world's only zero-carbon city, is still on track to be built in Abu Dhabi, despite massive changes in the world's economy.

The original project was projected to cost some $22 billion, and to be completed in 2016. More recent reviews considering the financial crisis indicate the advanced residential and industrial cluster may not be completed until 2020 or even 2025. However, the cityi's first phase is still on track to be ready for occupancy by 2015.

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Financial Incentives for Sustainable Development - Robert Moskowitz

Although some have expired, a great many government tax incentives, credits and other financial rewards are still available for homeowners who wish to install some form of green energy system in their principal residence.*

These incentives are intended both to stimulate economic activity and reflect society's growing recognition of the potential dangers and problems caused by global climate change, dependence on foreign oil supplies, and other impending changes in our energy economy. Governments at the federal, state, and local levels are trying to incentivize their residents to install so-called "green" technology that does a better job of utilizing renewable energy sources and/or being more efficient in its use of energy, regardless of its source.

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Zinc Industry's CSR Initiative Helps Tackles Zinc Deficiency - Anna Dubuis

Zinc deficiency affects two billion people globally and contributes to the deaths of 450,000 children every year. Yet, just like other micronutrient deficiencies, it is often an invisible illness, and consequently as a public health issue it receives little attention. Zinc is an essential micronutrient for human health, helping to fight off illness, like malaria and diarrhoea, and is vital to children's cognitive development and learning.  When diets do not contain sufficient amounts of zinc, the consequences include lower birth weight, a decrease in cognitive ability and increased susceptibility to other diseases.

As a major contributor to over 800,000 deaths each year, what is equally as shocking is that the majority of these deaths are easily preventable with a simple zinc supplement. UNICEF is one of the many humanitarian organisations that are providing zinc and other micronutrient supplements to children in developing countries. Just a few extra milligrams of zinc every day can be the difference between life and death.

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Water Reclamation Center Opens To Boost Environmental Conservation - Robert Moskowitz

A gathering of Wyoming's finest were on hand October 6, 2010, to witness the official opening of the new Red Desert Water Reclamation (RDWR) center. Designed to reclaim water polluted by use within the oil and gas industry, the RDWR facility brings a significantly higher level of environmental sustainability to the state. RDWR is located less than two hours by truck from a large number of multiple oil- and gas-producing basins.
RDWR can treat approximately 20,000 barrels of water per day, using a chemical-free, low-cost technology to transform pollluted water that is currently lost through well-injection or evaporation methods into usable water that easily meets both U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Wyoming's Department of Environmental Quality standards.

Incoming water is sorted on the basis of its Total Dissolved Solids, as much as 9000 parts per million (ppm), and isolated into tanks. It then passes through a system of clarifiers to remove suspended solids and floating organics, which are neutralized with a bentonite and polymer compound for disposal in a land fill. After clarification, the water goes through electro coagulation, flocculation and separation, and finally Reverse Osmosis. Fully cleaned, RDWR's reclaimed water can be used for irrigation or recycled for re-use in additional oil and gas production processes.

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Friday, October 8, 2010

Sustainable Development Weekly Updates - Justmeans

Energy Efficiency Expo Supports Sustainable Development. - Robert Moskowitz

A new kind of expo, the Energy Efficiency Expo, is coming to town. It's a newly organized trade fair showcasing products and services to help organizations reduce their energy consumption and become more energy-efficient, and it's scheduled to be held October 18-20, 2010, at the Gaylord Texan Convention Center in Grapevine, Texas (near Dallas).

"Energy Efficiency has become a key focus for business, government and institutional organizations," said David Webster, president of the new event's producer, Webcom Communications. "Attendees will be able to see and learn about the many new products and services available that can help them reduce energy consumption, lower their energy bills and improve their green footprint. Some will even discover new ways they can turn energy-efficiency capabilities into revenue-generation tools for their organization."

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Sustainable Development: Cleaning up the Kitchen - Anna Dubuis

Last week, a new international alliance was launched to address the problems of inefficient cook stoves used in rural, poor households that are responsible for the deaths of almost 2 million people every year.

Exposure to smoke from traditional cook stoves and open fires kills an estimated 1.6 to 1.8 million women and children and causes countless more cases of pneumonia, lung cancer, emphysema and other diseases. According to the World Health Organisation, cooking smoke is responsible for more deaths than malaria.

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Renewable Energy Sources in U.S. Power Generation Boost Environmental Conservation - Robert Moskowitz

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), biofuels, biomass, geothermal, hydroelectric, solar, and wind provided 11.14% of all domestic U.S. energy production during the first six months of 2010 - the latest time-frame for which data has been published.

This continues the steady growth trend for renewable energy sources in the U.S.

In fact, renewable energy sources powered 4.91% more BTUs (4.106 quadrillion) during the first six months of 2010, compared with the first six months of 2009, and 8.37% more BTUs than they provided during the first half of 2008.

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Sustainable Development Shown By World Largest Photovoltaic Plan - Robert Moskowitz

First Solar, a leading manufacturer of photovoltaic (PV) solar panels and provider of solar solutions, and Enbridge, a leader in the safe and reliable delivery of energy throughout North America and recognized as one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World, have opened the 80-megawatt Sarnia Solar Project for commercial operation, allowing it to take its place as the largest operating photovoltaic power-generation facility in the world.

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