Watching minutes, ignoring hours by David Morris Originally published in Minneapolis Star Tribune, May 1, 2005 A few years ago the following tongue-in-cheek economics lesson made the rounds of mainstream news journals: Bill Gates would lose money if, on his way to work, he stopped to pick up a $100 bill. Why? Over his business… Continue reading
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By executive order Iowa’s Governor has established a renewable portfolio standard for state operations that leans heavily on in-state renewable energy sources. Governor Tom Vilsack’s order directs state agencies to obtain at least 10 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2010 and to reduce their energy use in buildings by 15 percent by 2010 relative to their energy use in 2000.
Voters in San Luis Obispo, California, have defeated a 650,000-square-foot big-box shopping center.
The Marketplace project, which included a Target, Lowe’s, Whole Foods, Old Navy, Circuit City, and several other chains, was to be built on 130 acres of prime farmland at the gateway to the city. San Luis Obispo has a population of 45,000 and is located about halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles.
A new report by the Photovoltaic Technology Research Advisory Council (PV-TRAC) reviews the current status of solar powered electricity and presents a vision of photovoltaic technology for 2030 and beyond. The report nicely summarizes the policies of EU member states that have encouraged solar powered distributed generation.
Internet users have a nice opportunity to tune in via the web on a pair of workshops set up to discuss issues related to combined heat and power (CHP) and distributed generation (DG) development in California.
UPDATE MAY 12, 2005: The webcasts of these two meetings don’t appear to be archived on the CEC web site. So we’ve added links below to the various presentations that the CEC has put online that came out of these meetings.
A strategic report on developing a sustainable biomass policy, prepared for a foundation in 2001, offers a vision that is still relevant today.
We received a question on the whether or not states like New Jersey have authority to enact more stringent rules on mercury emissions from power plants than what the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued recently.
Here is the original question:
Community wind energy projects are expanding across the Midwest. These locally owned commercial-scale wind projects maximize local economic benefits. Take a look at how farmers and entrepreneurs are harvesting a new crop.
Below find some nice online resources describing successful community wind energy projects.
Wal-Mart and an Ohio developer spent heavily and attacked opponents as wealthy elites in a successful campaign to overturn a new law governing large-scale retail stores in the town of Bennington, Vermont. The local ordinance capped retail stores at 75,000 square feet (about one-and-a-half football fields) and required proposals for stores over 30,000 square to pass a community impact review. It was enacted unanimously by the town’s select board in January after three years of extensive review, public meetings and deliberations. Continue reading
Three Philadelphia City Councilors—David Cohen, Richard Mariano and Frank DiCicco—have introduced an ordinance that would bar "predatory superstores" from locating within the city. The ordinance defines predatory superstores as any store over 180,000 square feet or any store over 90,000 square feet that devotes more than 10 percent of its floor space to nontaxable grocery items. Continue reading