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Archive for July, 2009|Monthly archive page

Best Green Blogs Directory

In Environment on July 29, 2009 at 11:54 am

Best Green Blogs is the directory for environment and sustainability blogs. It features many different weblogs from all over the world that focus on a wide variety of green and sustainability issues, people, things, places and ideas.

Whether people are discussing cleantech in the UK, global warming issues in Italy or sustainable agriculture in China, you are apt to find it here. They feature eco-themed blogs from around the world along with detailed info about each blog as well.

This site lists the global  blogs by topic which can be location specific (a country/region) or topic related (technology, green living, political efforts on protecting the environment, etc.). Some blogs are commercial but many are written by impassioned writers on the current topics affecting global warming and ways to mitigate the damage caused by a large and growing global carbon footprint.

The site is beautiful and contains snapshots of the weblogs listed. Some blogs receive special mention and are featured on the front page. Take a look and become better informed about what people are saying on these timely topics.

To read more about what the site is all about, click here. via Add A Blog « Best Green Blogs Directory.

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Top 7 Places to Watch Great Minds in Action

In entrepreneur, Technology on July 28, 2009 at 9:39 pm

Reproduced in part from Mashable: The Social Media Guide

July 28th, 2009 | by Josh Catone

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Here is a list of the top 7 places to watch great minds in action. What makes these conferences special is both the people they’re able to assemble together in one place and that they put videos of the experiences online for everyone to enjoy.

1. TED

Founded in 1984 by Richard Saul Wurman, the Technology, Entertainment, Design (TED) conference is a now three times per year gathering that brings together some of the world’s most influential and innovative creative thinkers to share, teach, and learn across multiple disciplines.

2. Pop!Tech

Held every year in a quaint seaside village in New England, Pop!Tech attracts 500 visionary thinkers to a restored, 19th-century opera house to talk about “science, technology and the future of ideas.” Pop!Tech attendees are among the best and the brightest in their fields.

3. Business Innovation Factory

Held each year in a theater in downtown Providence, the Business Innovation Factory’s annual Collaborative Innovation Summit is a meeting place for some of the world’s most interesting people. Attendees come together to discuss innovation and share experiences in a small, intimate setting.

4. Gel

Gel, or the “Good Experience Live,” bills itself as “an eclectic, mind-expanding event that includes presenters from many different disciplines – design, technology, business, and so on – [that] attracts an audience of similar diversity.” The two-day conference has been held every year in New York since 2003 (and once in Copenhagen, Denmark in 2006).

5. BIL

BIL, which stands for “Breeding. Impromptu. Luminary.” is an ad-hoc conference for big thinkers that’s held each year in whatever city is hosting TED. BIL originally began as a group of people planning to crash the TED conference in 2007 in Monterey, California (where TED was held back then), but as the group grew, they decided instead to hold their own unconference across the street.

6. Big Think

The Big Think is, in their words, “a global online forum connecting people and ideas.” The site offers a platform for connecting and engaging around big ideas and innovative concepts.

7. ideaCity

Held in Toronto every June, ideaCity is a three-day conference built in the mold of TED. Only 497 people get to attend each year to hear the conference’s 50 speakers.

BIF, Big Think, BIL, Conference, Gel, great minds, ideaCity, Lists, Pop!Tech, TED, video

Tesla Motors – how it works

In cleantech, Technology on July 28, 2009 at 11:08 am

How It Works

When you build a car that’s electric, you start with one built-in advantage: Electric cars just don’t have to be as complex mechanically as the car you’re probably driving now. Sophisticated electronics and software take the place of the pounds and pounds of machinery required to introduce a spark and ignite the fuel that powers an internal combustion engine.

For example, the typical four-cylinder engine of a conventional car comprises over a hundred moving parts. By comparison, the motor of the Tesla Roadster has just one: the rotor. So there’s less weight to drive around and fewer parts that could break or wear down over time.

The Tesla Roadster’s elegantly designed powertrain consists of just the four main components discussed below. Mind you, these aren’t “off-the-shelf” components, and each includes innovations, both small and large. But when you build a car from the ground up, you have the luxury of questioning every assumption — and to distill as you reinvent.

The Battery

When we set out to build a high-performance electric car, the biggest challenge was obvious from the start: the battery. Its complexities are clear: it’s heavy, expensive, and offers limited power and range. Yet it has one quality that eclipses these disadvantages and motivated us to keep working tirelessly: it’s clean.

BGE unveils $500M smart grid program aimed to trim customers’ bills – Baltimore Business Journal:

In Energy on July 13, 2009 at 4:25 pm

Reprinted from
Baltimore Business Journal – by Scott Dance Staff

BG&E unveiled plans Monday for a smart grid program that it says will take as much demand off the electric grid as a new power plant, but at far lower cost.

The utility is planning to install 2 million “smart” electric meters in its customers’ homes and businesses. The meters will help the customers reduce their energy consumption at times of peak demand, and the utility will give the customers rebates in return.

The program will cost $500 million — a bill customers will foot through a surcharge of a few dollars a month for businesses and an average of $1.24 per month for residential customers. BGE is also seeking $200 million through the U.S. Department of Energy and federal economic stimulus package to reduce those surcharges.

via BGE unveils $500M smart grid program aimed to trim customers’ bills – Baltimore Business Journal:.

VC fundraising hits 7-year low – Washington Business Journal:

In Venture Capital on July 13, 2009 at 4:19 pm

VC fundraising hits 7-year low – Washington Business Journal:.

VC fundraising hits 7-year low – Washington Business Journal

washington.bizjournals.com The recession caught up with venture capitalists. The firms raised $1.7 billion in the 2Q ’09, the lowest quarterly raise in > 7 years. Only 25 firms reported raising money nationally, (Thomson Reuters & the National Venture Capital Association). The $1.7 billion raised in 2Q of 2009 < 1/5 of the 2008 2Q total of $9.3B when 82 firms raised money.

Path to $3B in Stimulus Funds Revealed to Renewable Energy Developers | GreenBiz.com

In cleantech, Energy, entrepreneur, Environment, greentech, investment, Sustainable, Technology, technology transfer on July 11, 2009 at 2:51 pm

By Tilde Herrera, ClimateBiz
Published July 10, 2009

OAKLAND, Calif. — The Energy and Treasury departments released eagerly awaited guidance Thursday to help renewable energy project developers apply for roughly $3 billion in stimulus funds, which experts say will open the market to many technologies that weren’t economically feasible before.

The departments released the guidance, terms of conditions and a sample application, although applications won’t be accepted until next month. The rules is a major step that will spur private sector investment in clean energy and move the U.S. closer to President Barack Obama’s goal of doubling renewable energy capacity in three years, according to Matt Rogers, a Department of Energy (DOE) senior advisor charged with implementing ARRA funding.

“By getting these rules out there and making it clear how to apply we’re hoping this will bring that private capital back from the sidelines and into the market quickly,” Rogers said during a conference call with reporters Thursday.

The tax grants will offset between 10 percent and 30 percent of the project’s cost, depending on the technology type. Construction must begin by the end of 2010 and the projects must be placed into service by 2017 at the latest for certain types of technologies. The Treasury Department expects the program will benefit some 5,000 projects, and seems ready to boost funding from an estimated $3 billion if demand warrants an increase.

Credit termination date and credit percentage, by project type
Courtesy of Energy and Treasury departments

Under this temporary program, developers who previously qualified for the production tax credit can now opt for the investment tax credit, which is based on the cost of the project, not the amount of electricity to be generated. Those eligible to claim the investment tax credit may then elect to receive a direct payment, rather than having the credit paid over 10 years and based on the amount of electricity generated. Cash grant recipients must agree to give up future tax credits.

New Report Showcases 50 Most Promising Nordic Cleantech Companies

In cleantech, entrepreneur, greentech, Sustainable, Technology on July 8, 2009 at 1:33 pm

New report showcases 50 most promising Nordic cleantech companies

Uncertain financial climate a concern but not a barrier to innovation in the region, applicants say

COPENHAGEN, April 30, 2009 – The Cleantech Group™, LLC, founders of the cleantech sector and providers of leading global market research and financial services for the cleantech ecosystem, in partnership with Cleantech Scandinavia, the leading Nordic network of investors in cleantech, today released a first ever report identifying 50 leading cleantech companies in the Nordic market. The report, sponsored by leading Nordic VC firms BankInvest, Energy Capital Management, Eqvitec Partners, Northzone Ventures, and Sustainable Technologies Fund, identifies key representatives of Nordic excellence in Cleantech innovation, as well as outlining the driving sectors and key concerns facing this emerging region.

via New Report Showcases 50 Most Promising Nordic Cleantech Companies.

A talk with Dean Kamen | MassDevice.com

In entrepreneur, Science on July 8, 2009 at 12:56 pm

A talk with serial innovator Dean Kamen | MassDevice.com | MassDevice – Feature.

July 8, 2009 by Brian Johnson

The inventor of the DEKA arm, the iBOT, the Segway (and others) on healthcare reform, the contrast between the pace of innovation and its adoption by society and how he’d like to be remembered.

Dean Kamen is rarely at a loss for words. In fact, the man is rarely at a loss for anything.

At a recent conference at Boston University, Kamen, 58, took up more than triple his allotted time for a keynote speech

But what else would you expect from the man who, in his spare time, decided to create a “Super Bowl of Science,” because he was tired of seeing pro athletes treated as kings while more and more American kids rejected science outright. Kamen’s pet project, “FIRST: For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology,” once held in his Manchester mill building, is now held annually in a packed Georgia Dome; every winning team gets to visit the president of the United States.

Red Herring Global VCs 2009~Finalists

In Venture Capital on July 8, 2009 at 12:00 pm

Red Herring Global VCs 2009~Finalists.

RED HERRING 100 GLOBAL VCs

Red Herring has made the first in the three steps in coming up with the World’s Top 100 Venture Capital firms. First, we are releasing the best 200 performers from over 30 nations from 1,800 candidates that have all invested in two or more technology companies in the past five years. Subsequent to this announcement we will cut the pool of 200 finalists down to the Top 100 winners, and soon after we will then provide an individual ranking of each of the Top 100.

Nanopillar Solar Cells

In cleantech, Energy, entrepreneur, greentech, Science, Sustainable, technology transfer on July 6, 2009 at 10:01 am

Nanopillar Solar Cells.

technologyreview.com Researchers @ UC Berkeley made a new kind of solar cell by growing an array of upright nanoscale pillars on aluminum foil. The design could lead to solar cells that cost less than conventional silicon photovoltaics & the technique used to make the cells could be adapted to make rolls of flexible panels on thin aluminum foil, cutting manufacturing costs.