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China’s 2005 Carbon Emissions Almost Twice As Much As 2002 Emissions

by Jack Rosebro Carbon emissions associated with increased exports from China (left), as part of a more systematic view of increased national emissions (right), 2002 to 2005. Guan et al. (2009) Click to enlarge. Energy efficiency gains in a rapidly modernizing China “cannot cope” with skyrocketing emissions caused by increased... Read more →

Solar Roadways Named a Finalist for 2009 EE Times ACE Awards

Solar Roadways, the developer of structurally engineered solar panels that are driven upon., has been nanmed one of five finalists for the Best Enabler Award for Green Engineering category in the 2009 EE Times Annual Creativity in Electronics (ACE) Awards. Solar Roadway”s concept is to replace all current petroleum-based asphalt... Read more →

Even If Warming Ceased, Sea Level to Rise At Least About 184 mm From Melting Glaciers and Ice Caps

Even if the global climate did not continue to warm, sea level will still rise at least 184 ± 33 mm (7.2 ± 1.3 inches) due to the current mass wastage of the world’s mountain glaciers and ice caps, according to a new study published 11 February in Geophysical Research... Read more →

Miller Industries Adds Eaton Hybrid-Powered Race Recovery Vehicle To Fleet; New Application for Hybrid Trucks

Miller Industries, Inc. used an Eaton hybrid system-equipped 2009 International DuraStar 4300 recovery vehicle during the recent Daytona 500 motorsports race. The hybrid recovery truck. Click to enlarge. The debut of the colorful white and green vehicle as part of Miller’s 12-truck fleet at the famed Daytona International Speedway was... Read more →

Japan Auto Exports Plunge 60.9% in January; 76.5% Drop in Exports to US

Passenger car exports from Japan plunged 60.9% in January to 200,347 units (including 7,560 knock down units), down 311,969 units year-on-year, according to figures from the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association. Auto shipments to the US plummeted 76.5% to 45,876 units; exports to Europe fell 63.2% to 50,864; Asia-bound exports fell... Read more →

Mascoma Begins Cellulosic Ethanol Production in New York

Mascoma Corporation has begun producing cellulosic ethanol from non-food biomass at its demonstration facility in Rome, New York. Mascoma’s Consolidated Bioprocessing (CBP) process consists of a mild pretreatment followed by the introduction of cellulose-utilizing and ethanol-fermenting microbes that both hydrolyze and ferment the sugars into ethanol. (Earlier post.) CBP involves... Read more →

EPA Study Finds Residential Construction Trends in US Metropolitan Regions Showing Substantial Shift, But Falling Short of Reshaping Sprawl

Central city share of residential construction. Click to enlarge. A new report from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suggests that the distribution of residential construction has significantly changed over time in many regions. In more than half of the largest metropolitan areas, urban core communities have significantly increased their... Read more →

GM Europe/OPEL to Submit Plan for Viability

GM Europe and the Opel Supervisory Board have approved a confidential long-term plan for viability that will be submitted to government representatives in the coming days. The confidential document includes a funding request for €3.3 billion (US$4.2 billion) in government support (German and other governments), €3 billion (US$3.8 billion) in... Read more →

Renault-Nissan Alliance and Electromotive to Collaborate on Charging Infrastructure

The Renault-Nissan Alliance and UK company Elektromotive, a provider of electric vehicle recharging stations, are collaborating in the Partnership for Zero-Emission-Mobility, with the aim of accelerating the installation of charging networks for plug-in vehicles in cities. Elektromotive and EDF Energy and have been working in partnership since 2007 to develop... Read more →

Total Number of Private Cars in China up 28% in 2008

The total number of cars for civilian use in China rose 24.5% in 2008 from 2007 to 24.38 million, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics of China. Private-owned cars numbered 19.47 million, representing a 28.0% increase over 2007. The total number of motor vehicles for civilian... Read more →

Ford Begins Manufacture of EcoBoost Engines at Cleveland Plant

Ford Motor Company is resuming production at Cleveland Engine Plant No. 1, which becomes the first manufacturing site to build Ford’s new fuel-efficient EcoBoost engines. The plant, idled since 2007, is ramping up pre-production of 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 engines that will be optional on the 2010 Lincoln MKS, Lincoln MKT... Read more →

Commercial Shipping Emits Almost Half As Much Particulate Pollution as Total Released by World’s Cars

Globally, commercial ships emit almost half as much particulate matter pollutants into the air as the total amount released by the world’s cars, according to a new study led by NOAA and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Ship pollutants affect local air quality and the health of people living... Read more →

Gasrec to Provide Liquefied Biogas for Sainsbury’s Dual-Fuel Vehicles

Gasrec, the UK’s first commercial producer of liquid biomethane (LBM) fuel, will provide the fuel for five Sainsbury trucks to be fitted with Genesis Dual-Fuel technology supplied by Clean Air Power, the developer and provider of natural gas combustion technology for heavy duty diesel engines. (Earlier post.) Sainsbury's started a... Read more →

Iowa Power Fund Board to Award $14.75M to POET for Cellulosic Ethanol Plant

The Iowa Power Fund Board approved the award of $14.75 million to assist POET in developing a commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plant capable of producing 25 million gallons per year. POET will use corn fiber and corn cobs in addition to their existing ethanol plant in Emmetsburg, Iowa. The Iowa Office... Read more →

Study Concludes That Smaller Capacity PHEVs Would Be a “Robust” Option for Minimizing Fuel Consumption, Cost and GHG Emissions

Best vehicle choice for minimum fuel consumption, cost, or greenhouse gas emissions as a function of distance driven between charges across sensitivity scenarios. Shiau et al. (2009) Click to enlarge. A team of researchers from Carnegie Mellon University has analyzed the impact of plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) battery pack... Read more →

ARB Awards More Than $700K for Three Demos: Aerodynamic Trailer, Hydraulic Hybrid, and Biogas Engine

The California Air Resources Board (ARB) approved more than $700,000 in grants to bolster the commercialization of three clean air technologies. The projects, funded under the ARB’s Innovative Clean Air Technologies program, include demonstrations of a big-rig truck trailer aerodynamic device, a hydraulic hybrid drivetrain for commercial vehicles and a... Read more →

Congressionally-created Commission Recommends Mileage Tax Instead of Fuel Tax for Transportation Infrastructure Financing

Average annual capital needs and gap estimates, all levels of government, 2008-35 (in 2008 dollars). Click to enlarge. A bi-partisan Congressionally-created commission has recommended a shift from motor fuel taxes to direct fees charged to transportation infrastructure users—i.e., a federal mileage fee—as a way to reform financing of the US... Read more →

EdeniQ Corn3 Yield Enhancement Program Boosts Ethanol Yield 10%

EdeniQ, a biotechnology company serving the biofuels industry, unveiled its new Corn3 Yield Enhancement Program at the 14th annual National Ethanol Conference in San Antonio, Texas. EdeniQ’s Corn3 Yield Enhancement Program increases the yield of ethanol from an industry average of 2.69 un-denatured gallons per bushel to more than 3... Read more →

Study Concludes That Large-Scale Transport of Ethanol Could Negate Its Economic and Environmental Benefits Compared to Gasoline

Emissions from ethanol transport in the CMU study applied to ethanol life cycle emissions from other studies. Emissions from transport are recalculated using the CMU results. Click to enlarge. A new study by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) concludes that the emissions associated with the transport of ethanol could... Read more →

Mitsubishi Motors signs MoU with Hong Kong Environment Bureau on Testing of i MiEV

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC), in cooperation with its Hong Kong distributor Universal Cars Ltd., signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Environment Bureau of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China regarding local evaluation of the i MiEV electric vehicle. As... Read more →

Honda to Build New Cellulosic Ethanol R&D Facility to Accelerate Commercialization

Honda Motor Co., Ltd. will build a new research facility to work toward the establishment and practical application of bioethanol production technology from non-edible cellulosic material such as the stems and leaves of plants. Honda is continuing its collaborative research on bioethanol production technology with RITE (Research Institute of Innovative... Read more →

Department of Interior to Offer a New Round of Oil Shale Research, Development and Demonstration Leases

The Department of the Interior (DOI) will offer a second round of research, development, and demonstration leases for oil shale in Colorado and Utah and withdraw the Bush administration’s proposal for expanded RD&D leases. We need to push forward aggressively with research, development and demonstration of oil shale technologies to... Read more →

Lotus Engineering to Showcase Omnivore Engine Concept in Geneva

The Lotus Omnivore engine. Click to enlarge. Lotus Engineering will display a single-cylinder research engine monoblock demonstrating the architecture of the Omnivore engine concept at the upcoming 79th International Geneva Motor Show. (Earlier post.) The Omnivore was designed in collaboration with Queen’s University Belfast and Orbital Corporation Limited Australia for... Read more →

Volkswagen to Use B5 Biodiesel for 2009 Jetta TDI Cup Season

Volkswagen of America, Inc. will use B5 biodiesel to power its race cars, transport vehicles and generators during the 2009 Jetta TDI Cup season. Houston-based HYPERFUELS will supply B5 biodiesel for the series, which is sanctioned by the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) Pro Racing. During the 2009 season,... Read more →

Vélib Bicycle Sharing Scheme Losing 100 Bikes a Week

According to a report by the Environmental Transport Association, a spate of vandalism and theft has forced the sponsor of the Vélib cycle scheme (earlier post) in Paris to ask for help towards the cost of replacing damaged bicycles. Of the 20,000 bicycles that were introduced to the city’s streets... Read more →

Biofuels Industries Form Global Renewable Fuels Alliance

Companies and organizations from 29 countries representing more than 60% of global biofuels production have formed the Global Renewable Fuels Alliance (GRFA). The GRFA has a dual mission: to promote the expanded use of renewable fuels throughout the world through the advocacy of sound public policy and responsible research and,... Read more →

BMW Highlights at Geneva Include 116d, Thermoelectric Generator

Among its many Geneva introductions, BMW will debut the new 116d, now the most fuel-efficient, lowest-emission car in the BMW range. In the EU test cycle, the four-cylinder diesel, which develops maximum output of 85 kW (115 hp) consumes an average of 4.4 L/100km (53.5 mpg US) and offers a... Read more →

RMI Launches Project Get Ready to Help Communities Prepare for Plug-ins

Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) launched Project Get Ready, an initiative that emerged from its Smart Garage Summit in October 2008 and that is intended to help communities prepare for plug-in vehicles including full battery electric, plug-in hybrid electric, and converted hybrid or internal combustion vehicles. In addition to launching the... Read more →

President Obama Asks Congress for Carbon Cap Legislation; to Spend $15B per Year on Energy Technologies

In his first address to a joint session of the US Congress on 24 February, President Barack Obama named energy as one of the three areas of investment “that are absolutely critical to our economic future” and called on Congress to “send me legislation that places a market-based cap on... Read more →

Genomatica Develops Bio-manufacturing Process for Methyl Ethyl Ketone; Potential Product for Struggling Corn Ethanol Plants

Researchers at Genomatica, Inc., a sustainable chemical company, have developed a bio-manufacturing process for methyl ethyl ketone (MEK), a commonly used industrial solvent with a global market currently valued at more than $2 billion. The rapid development of the process for Bio-MEK demonstrates that Genomatica’s technology can repeatedly target specific... Read more →

QuantumSphere Awarded Research Grant for Algae Biogasification Process

QuantumSphere, Inc., a developer of advanced catalyst materials, high-performance electrode systems, and related process chemistries for portable power and clean-tech applications, has been awarded a research grant from the California Energy Commission to develop a process using nanocatalysts to convert algae biomass into biofuels via gasification. The grant was awarded... Read more →

IBM Joins EDISON Project to Build Smart Grid for Electric Cars

IBM has joined the EDISON research consortium, a Denmark-based collaborative aimed at developing an intelligent infrastructure that will make possible the large scale adoption of electric vehicles powered by sustainable energy. The EDISON effort (Electric Vehicles in a Distributed and Integrated Market using Sustainable Energy and Open Networks) consists of... Read more →

Balqon Begins Production of Electric Port Drayage Trucks for San Pedro Ports

Balqon E30 rolls off the line. Click to enlarge. Balqon Corp. has begun production of all-electric, heavy-duty drayage trucks capable of hauling 30-ton shipping containers in and around the San Pedro Bay, California port complex. (Earlier post.) An initiative of the Port of Los Angeles’s Clean Air Action Plan, the... Read more →

New Algae Growth Technology for Biofuels Production

Bionavitas, Inc. unveiled its patent-pending Light Immersion Technology (LIT) that it says produces an order of magnitude more algae biomass than existing growth methods, thereby increasing yields and reducing the cost to make algae-based biofuels price competitive with petroleum products. Nearly every large scale approach to algae growth has been... Read more →

UNEP, IEA, ITF and FIA Foundation to Launch Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GFEI)

A partnership of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), the International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Transport Forum (ITF) and FIA Foundation is launching the Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GFEI) at the upcoming Geneva motor show. The “50 by 50” effort calls for cars worldwide to be made 50% more fuel... Read more →

Study Concludes That an Aggressive Global Cellulosic Biofuels Program Could Have Unintended Consequences

Carbon balance associated with all land use change and that directly associated with biofuels over the period 2000-2050 as simulated by the deforestation (a) and intensification (b) scenarios. Melillo et al. (2009) Click to enlarge. An aggressive global cellulosic biofuels program could contribute substantially to future global-scale energy needs, but... Read more →

MCE-5 Development to Show Vehicle Equipped with Prototype Variable Compression Ratio Engine

1.5L VCRi engine with two-stage turbocharger. Click to enlarge. At the upcoming 79th International Motor Show in Geneva, France-based MCE-5 Development will showcase its first vehicle application (a Peugeot 407) of a prototype 1.5-liter MCE-5 VCRi (variable compression ratio) gasoline engine. The four-cylinder 1.5L VCRi, equipped with a two-stage turbocharger,... Read more →

Novozymes On Track With New Enzymes For Cellulosic Ethanol

Novozymes says it has cut cellulosic ethanol enzyme costs by more than half and is on track to deliver commercially viable enzymes by 2010. At the National Ethanol Conference in San Antonio, Texas Executive Vice President Peder Holk Nielsen presented the progress achieved by Novozymes’ latest second-generation enzyme products. This... Read more →

Sumitomo Corporation Invests in Liquid Fuel Cell Catalyst Company ACAL Energy

Sumitomo Corporation, a leading Japanese trading company with substantial business activities in energy, mineral and merchandise trading, has made an investment in UK-based ACAL Energy, the developer of fuel cell systems based on a novel liquid cathode technology (FlowCath). (Earlier post.) The new investment is in addition to the previously... Read more →

Launch of NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory Fails

NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory satellite (earlier post) failed to reach orbit after its 4:55 a.m. EST liftoff 24 Feb from California’s Vandenberg Air Force Base. The Orbiting Carbon Observatory (OCO) was designed to map geographic distribution and seasonal variations of Earth’s natural and anthropogenic carbon sinks and sources at a... Read more →

Volvo Adding Seven New DRIVe Models; Start/Stop, Regenerative Charging on Three

Volvo Cars is presenting seven new DRIVe models across its full range at the upcoming Geneva auto show, three of which are equipped with a start/stop system and regenerative charging. Volvo introduced its first three DRIVEe branded models—indicating uprated environmental properties—at the 2008 Paris motor show. (Earlier post.) All the... Read more →

Urban Transport System Incorporating “Roller Coaster” Principles

Japan for Sustainability. The Institute of Industrial Science, University of Tokyo (IIS), and Senyo Kogyo Co. and its group company (the companies are specialized in the construction of amusement park facilities) recently built a track line to test an energy-saving urban transportation system at the Chiba Experimental Station of IIS... Read more →

ARB Chairman Characterizes Ideological Debate Between Hydrogen and Batteries as “Madness”

California Air Resources Board (ARB) Chairman Mary Nichols characterized the sometimes contentious, ideological debate between those who advocate for hydrogen fuel cells and those who advocate for batteries as the ultimate enabler of low-carbon transportation as “madness” from the point of view of a regulator. Chairman Nichols made the comment... Read more →

DOE to Award Up to $300M in Stimulus Bill Funding for Projects to Expand Use of Alt-Fuel and Advanced Technology Vehicles

The US Department of Energy has issued a $300-million Funding Opportunity Announcement (DE-PS26-09NT01236-04) for applications for cost-shared projects that expand the use of alternative fueled vehicles and advanced technology vehicles. The installation or acquisition of infrastructure necessary to directly support an alternative fueled vehicle or advanced technology vehicle is also... Read more →

Saab to Give 9-3X its Debut in Geneva; E85 Plus All-Wheel Drive

The 9-3X. Click to enlarge. Saab will introduce the new 9-3X to the public at the upcoming Geneva motor show in March. The 9-3X sport wagon offers a lighter alternative to heavier and larger crossovers or SUVs. The 210 hp (155 kW), 2.0-liter turbo engine couples Saab’s E85-capable BioPower technology... Read more →

FEV, Inc. Adds Full Transmission and Driveline Development and Testing Capability

FEV, Inc., (FEV) a developer of advanced powertrain and vehicle technologies, has completed infrastructure investment that enables the company to be fully capable in transmission and driveline design, development and testing, including battery emulation for hybrid and electric transmissions. This marks the completion of a process that began with the... Read more →

Salazar: Obama Administration Keeping Oil Shale Development an Option

The Salt Lake Tribune. The Obama Administration will push an energy plan that potentially includes production of oil shale, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar told a group of Western governors assembled in Washington at the National Governor’s Association meeting. Salazar, who halted leases for oil and gas development on some federal... Read more →

China Province to Put 70 Li-ion Electric Buses with 300km Range into Service

Xinhua. Seventy lithium-ion iron phosphate powered electric buses with a range of 300 km (186 miles) will go into service in June in China’s Jilin Province. The government of Liaoyuan was buying 20 of the 24-seat buses and the Changchun city government had ordered 50. The 24-seat buses are being... Read more →

Satellite Sensor Malfunction Caused Underestimation Error in NSIDC Arctic Sea Ice Extent Analysis Beginning in January

The US National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) reported that a malfunction of the satellite sensor used for its daily sea ice products resulted in a slowly growing underestimation of Arctic sea ice extent beginning in January. The center has removed the most recent data and is investigating alternative... Read more →

Preliminary Analysis Shows January Heat-Related Deaths in Australia Roughly Equal To Bushfire Deaths

A Monash University analysis of the first of two heat waves which struck Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania indicates that more than 200 people were killed by heat in three days, including approximately one hundred of Melbourne’s citizens. Professor Neville Nichols, who researches climate variability, impacts, and extremes at the... Read more →