Category Archives: Clean Tech

‘”Carbon Bubble” Threatens Stock Markets, say UK MPs

BBC News

By Matt McGrath, Environment Correspondent

oil rig2 Investments in coal and oil may be overvalued, according to MPs.

 

The world’s financial markets could be creating a “carbon bubble” by over valuing the fossil fuel assets of large companies say MPs.

Much of this coal and oil may have to be left in the ground to combat climate change, according to the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC)

The Committee also hits out at the lack of green finance.

Less than half the £200bn needed to deliver emissions cuts by 2020 is in place they say.

A number of studies in recent years have warned that stock markets around the world have overvalued companies with large holdings of coal, oil and gas. Read more »

6 Green-Roof Myths, Busted

From Houzz

By

Green roofs, living roofs, vegetated roofs, ecoroofs — whatever you want to call them, they are sprouting up everywhere lately, including atop residential homes. And with that increase in popularity comes general assumptions and misconceptions. For example, that green roofs are only for ecobuffs, they’re high maintenance and they’re experimental and risky. All untrue. 

Let’s take a look at some common green-roof myths and see if they, er, hold any water.beach style exterior by Prentiss Architects Read more »

The Week in Cleantech: July 22 – 29

From i3 Research Team, Cleantech Investment Insight

This past week saw a number of interesting financing rounds in the cleantech space. Although all were fairly small amounts, the variety of technologies represented is of interest. Cleanweb continues to grab headlines, although the more traditional Energy Efficiency and Solar sectors are also attracting financing.

Easy Taxi, a Brazilian app for ordering and pre-paying taxis, received $10 million from Millicom and Rocket Internet, in the form of the firms’ joint venture, Africa Internet Holding. The company will use the funding to expand into Africa, Asia and the Middle East, with Nigeria as the first new market. Easy Taxi joins LyftHailo and other taxi and ride apps that have raised money recently.

Bidgely, a California-based developer of an online platform enabling home energy monitoring and management, received $5 million from Khosla Ventures. The company plans to use the funding to make hires in its business and engineering teams and commercialize its technology through energy carriers.

BrightSource Energy, the California-based developer of concentrating solar thermal technology used to produce high-value electricity and steam for power, petroleum and process markets, received $15 million of a targeted $35 million round. The company has previously raised over $620 million from BP VenturesChevron Technology Ventures and VantagePoint Capital Partners, among others.

Seattle ready to “Pay for Performance”

Seattle leading the way with a new incentive model.

From The Toronto Atmospheric Fund.

Traditional energy conservation incentives typically consist of a one-time rebate after finishing the energy retrofit. While this type of project-based incentive has achieved significant progress on energy efficiency, it has limitations. For one, the one-time rebate doesn’t reflect the ongoing value of energy savings that can last for a decade or more. These programs also have no provisions to ensure the savings are maintained over the long-term. Enter Seattle City Light (SCL), the 10th largest public electric utility in the country. SCL is testing a new incentive model that aims to combat these limitations: Pay for Performance (PfP). The PfP model will be available to buildings undertaking a major energy retrofit, and will provide an ongoing rebate per kilowatt hour saved each year based on verified performance. Participants who go beyond the minimum 15% savings target are eligible for a higher rebate per kilowatt hour. It’s an intriguing new model, one that could have widespread use should it prove effective.

A 280,000% Mark Up for… Water? A Look Inside the Bottled Water Industry

From Likes.com

Imagine there was a time when bottled water didn’t exist in our catalog of popular commodities. Perhaps the trend started in 1976 when the chic French sparkling water, Perrier, made its introduction. There it was seductively bottled in its emerald green glass amongst the era of disco and the spectacle of excesses… who could resist right?! What could be more decadent than to package, sell and consume what most consider (in the Western world) a common human right easily supplied through a home faucet! It’s absurd that the cost of designer water is at a “280,000% markup” to your tap water and it’s reaching record heights in consumption.

Read more »

Stanford Scientists Break Record for Thinnest Light-Absorber

BY MARK SHWARTZ

Carl HagglundAn electron micrograph shows the cross-sectional view of the record-thin absorber layer created at Stanford. Shown are three gold nanodots, each about 14-by-7 nanometers in size, coated with in sulfide.
An electron micrograph shows the cross-sectional view of the record-thin absorber layer created at Stanford. Shown are three gold nanodots, each about 14-by-7 nanometers in size, coated with in sulfide.

Stanford University scientists have created the thinnest, most efficient absorber of visible light on record. The nanosize structure, thousands of times thinner than an ordinary sheet of paper, could lower the cost and improve the efficiency of solar cells, according to the scientists. Their results are published in the current online edition of the journal Nano Letters.

“Achieving complete absorption of visible light with a minimal amount of material is highly desirable for many applications, including solar energy conversion to fuel and electricity,” said Stacey Bent, a professor of chemical engineering at Stanford and a member of the research team. “Our results show that it is possible for an extremely thin layer of material to absorb almost 100 percent of incident light of a specific wavelength.”

An electron micrograph shows the cross-sectional view of the record-thin absorber layer created at Stanford.  Shown are three gold nanodots, each about 14-by-17 nanometers in size, coated with tin sulfide. Read more »

Impact Engine Applications Open for 2013 Class

Impact Engine, a Chicago-based environmental and social innovation accelerator, has opened applications for Impact 2, the program’s second cohort after its 2012 debut.  Five out of eight graduates from Impact Engine’s first class have raised a total of $2.5 million in seed funding. Most recently, Pangea secured more than $1 million in an oversubscribed round that included OCA Ventures, Origin Ventures, i2A Fund, Firestarter Fund, and local angel investors.

Applications for the 2013 class are due by June 30, 2013.

Solar Impulse Completes First Leg of “Across America” Solar Flight

Solar Impulse, the solar airplane of Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg, successfully launched the “Clean Generation” initiative by completing the first leg of the 2013 Across America mission – the first crossing of the United States by a solar-powered airplane capable of flying day and night.

Solar Impulse - the first solar airplane flying day and night without fuel

Read more »

清洁科技投资动态: 2013年第一季度,投资者的关注焦点明显转向资本效率

洁技术集团季度投资监控数据显示交易数量(217)近创记录,但交易总额降至10.7亿美元。

清洁技术集团 (Cleantech Group™)是一家全球市场情报公司,引导大企业高管与清洁技术创新建立合作。公司今天在其i3 平台上发布了2013年第一季度的初步统计数据。公司报道称,2013年第1季度全球清洁技术领域的风险投资总额为10.7亿美元。

仅就投资金额而言,清洁技术领域风险投资比2012年第4季度同比下跌了29%(15亿美元)。2013年第1季度的投资交易数量为217笔,连续两个季度保持较高水平,但是总额走低。一旦所有投资者提交全部投资交易数字,交易总额可能会再次上升。在这些投资交易中,有54%(117)为第二轮融资或更进一步的融资,占本季度总投资金额的90%(约合9亿美元)。

“市场已经越过了非理性繁荣阶段,在资本部署方面显得更谨慎、考虑更全面。” 清洁技术集团副总裁Greg Neichin说, “对于那些在能源和资源领域有长远眼光的企业来讲,这是个不错的征兆。交易数量的增长(特别是早期投资交易数量)加上企业战略性投资的持续关注让我们完全相信,强健的产业基础已经形成。” Read more »

When Cleantech Marries a Social Network

Facebook – a 60-billion-dollar social media titan. Cleantech Group – a preeminent research and advisory firm whose flagship events attract some of the biggest multinationals, from Walmart to Google, GE, and Veolia. When the two companies joined hands to create a contest called “Cleantech Goes Social”, concluded last week during the Cleantech Forum, what made this collaboration interesting is its grassroots direction. Cleantech Group’s expertise helping clean technology innovators scale up by partnering with large industrial corporations is now complemented by a different kind of scaling—that of the human power found in Facebook’s billion-person network.

The contest’s three finalists represent three burgeoning trends in the socio-economic realm: crowd funding, collaborative consumption, and behavioral economics.

Read more »

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