Energy Independent Saudi Arabia Is Investing $109 Billion In Solar Energy.

Solar installation in Saudi ArabiaSaudi Arabia just completed a 12,684 panel solar installation that generates 3.5-megawatts of renewable energy. It’s Saudi Arabia’s largest solar installation to date and part of their ongoing plan to invest $109 billion in solar power to reach 41,000 megawatts of solar capacity within two decades.

As the US strives for liquid fuel energy independence, currently liquid fuel energy independent Saudi Arabia is going solar. Maybe the US can learn from the Saudi’s, realize now that the whole liquid fuel energy independence thing is overrated, and skip that middle step and go directly to solar. [Bloomberg]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmail

Siemens Builds World’s Largest Offshore Wind Turbines And DONG Will Operate The Wind Farm.

World's Largest Wind Turbine - SiemensSiemens is building the massive 6-megawatt wind turbines and DONG Energy will manage the project off the Yorkshire coast. DONG’s long term plan is to install 300 of the Siemen’s wind turbines around the UK. It’s great to see DONG and Siemens working so well together. [e360]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmail

To Keep Future Energy Costs Predictable, IKEA Decides To Double-Down On Renewable Energy.

IKEA solar panelsIkea has always tried to simplify the furniture assembly process. Following that same path, Ikea is now working to simplify how they’ll get their future electricity by doubling their investment in renewable energy to $4 billion. From Ikea CEO and President Mikael Ohlsson (Bloomberg):

“I foresee we’ll continue to increase our investments in renewable energy… looking at how quickly we’re expanding and our value chain, we will most likely have to double the investments once more after 2015.”

Ikea’s goal is to get 100% of the power for their stores from renewable sources by 2020. Ikea’s stores currently get 34% of their electricity from 250,000 solar panels they own and from 126 wind turbines they’ve invested in. [Bloomberg]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmail

Peel-And-Stick Solar Cells Could Generate Renewable Power On Everything And Everyone.

Stanford University: Peel and Stick thin film solar cells.Researchers at Stanford University have developed a way to produce ultra-thin solar cells that can be peeled and applied to a variety of surfaces including cell phones, windows etc. From e360:

“Normally, thin-film solar cells are attached to rigid, often heavy, silicon and glass substrates because most unconventional surfaces aren’t compatible with the thermal and chemical processes involved in producing the cells. The new process gets around that challenge, the scientists say, because it does not require any fabrication to occur on the final substrate surface. Instead, it involves pressing an ultra-thin film of nickel, a silicon/silicon dioxide wafer, and a protective polymer into a “sandwich,” and then attaching a layer of thermal release tape. When dipped in room-temperature water, the thin-film solar cell can be peeled from the original wafer and attached to a wide range of surfaces, from window glass to cellphones.”

Depending on how the solar power is transferred and stored by the host, the applications of the Peel-and-Stick solar cell technology are endless.


Jubbling wants to help further this technology so we searched and discovered our possible, and now hair-less, candidate who’ll host a mobile solar farm:

Sticker Man:  Peel-And-Stick Mobile Solar Farm... Man
So where do you think the battery will go? [Yale e360]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmail

Canadian Company Makes Millions Sending Never Unloaded Rail Cars With Biodiesel Back And Forth Across US Border.

Rail cars carrying fuel.A loophole in how biodiesel is tracked and credited by the EPA in the US allowed a company in Toronto, Bioversel Trading Inc., to transport the same load of biodiesel back and forth across the border and make millions. From the CBC:

“Bioversel Trading hired CN Rail to import tanker loads of biodiesel to the U.S. to generate RINs, which are valuable in the U.S. because of a “greening” policy regulating the petroleum industry. The EPA’s “Renewable Fuel Standard” mandate that oil companies bring a certain amount of renewable fuel to market, quotas they can achieve through blending biofuel with fossil fuel or by purchasing RINs as offsets.

Because RINs can be generated through import, the 12 trainloads that crossed into Michigan would have contained enough biodiesel to create close to 12 million RINs. In the summer of 2010, biodiesel RINs were selling for 50 cents each, but the price soon fluctuated to more than $1 per credit.

Once “imported” to a company capable of generating RINs, ownership of the biodiesel was transferred to Bioversel’s American partner company, Verdeo, and then exported back to Canada. RINs must be “retired” once the fuel is exported from the U.S., but Bioversel says Verdeo retired ethanol RINs, worth pennies, instead of the more valuable biodiesel RINs. Bioversel claims this was all perfectly legal.”

You have to read the full crazy story on CBC’s website. [CBC via NY Times]


Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmail

Pedal And Solar-Powered ELF Electric-Assist Vehicle From Organic Transit.

Organic Transit's ELF Electric-Assist Vehicle
Organic Transit’s
ELF ($4000) is three-wheeled, one-person electric-assist vehicle that can be recharged via a rooftop solar panel, pedaling or by wall-charging the ELF’s removable battery. Its slim design and bicycle classification allows the ELF to travel on the road or bike paths in all 50 states. The ELF can travel up to 30 miles on one charge and it’s also able to carry approx 350 lbs of cargo in addition to the rider.

Organic Transit has turned to Kickstarter to help raise funds and their timing couldn’t be better – pitching a product called ELF in December couldn’t hurt fundraising. [Clean Technica]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmail