Crowdfunding a Road Legal Solar Car: Sunswift eVe 2.0

With everyone and their brother planning their own crowdfunding campaigns, in the hopes of raising enough cash to fund the further development or production run of their big idea, the crowdfunding environment is getting more and more crowded every day. Between wishful thinking, downright silly projects that get funded (or not), it’s easy to feel skeptical about this funding option, but as the crowdfunding industry begins to mature, we’re starting to some great reasons for using crowdfunding to bring a…

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This Social Network Connects Solar Homeowners

Can a social network, crowdsourced performance data, and collaborative analysis of home solar power systems lead to smarter solar power, and more of it? If the direction that Generaytor is heading is any indication, then the future of wiser solar will come, at least in part, through connecting people, data, and insights from real-world solar homes, into a virtual community of solar homeowners. The increasing adoption of solar power for homes and businesses is being driven by a number of…

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The Costs of Electric Cars: Upfront Costs vs Long-Term Savings

If you’re anything like many of us in the green business scene, then making the leap from buying fuel-efficient vehicles to considering the purchase of an electric car for yourself or your business isn’t a very big one. The long-term fuel (and environmental) savings can be quite considerable, which helps bolster the economic argument for choosing electric cars over gas vehicles. But as most of us who’ve looked at the price tags for new EVs can attest, the upfront costs…

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Patagonia Invests $13M in Hawaiian Rooftop Solar Projects

What do you do to further your goal of using business to help solve environmental issues, when you already give back a percentage of your profits to environmental organizations, you’ve become a B Corp (benefit corporation), you’re convincing your customers that they can repair their old gear and that they don’t need your latest product, you’ve been actively working on supply chain transparency, and you’ve helped to create an index of social and environmental performance for developing better products and…

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New Solar Investing Platform Connects Investors to Vetted Commercial Solar Projects

The launch of a new financing marketplace for commercial solar projects could make solar investing as easy as investing in the public markets, and give investors the healthy returns from renewable energy investments that many large institutional investors currently enjoy. Wunder Capital, a graduate of Techstar’s tech accelerator program, is essentially reimagining commercial solar finance by connecting individual accredited investors with vetted commercial solar projects, with the goal of achieving average annual returns of 7%. “Wunder makes it dead simple…

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Net Zero Mercedes-Benz Office Building Concept

Net-Zero Is the Holy Grail of Commercial Green Buildings

It wasn’t that long ago that the term ‘green building’ was seen as something extra you did or tried to incorporate into construction in order to greenwash it or give it a ‘touchy-feely’ green aspect for marketing purposes. Because the general public doesn’t have a good grasp on what a green building truly is, I think that has made the issue a bit of a hard-sell for some people, until they “do the math” and find out that green buildings…

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New Electric Vehicle “Eco-Routing” Navigation System Cuts Energy Use up to 51%

There are already a lot of navigation tools for driving on the market, ranging from basic add-on GPS units to smartphone-based mapping and navigation tools, but most of them focus on either cutting the driving distance or the driving time, not necessarily energy or fuel consumption, but a new navigation system targeted to electric vehicles could help EV drivers cut their energy use by a significant percentage. Researchers at the University of California Riverside have developed an “eco-routing” navigation system…

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renewable energy credits

Renewable Energy Credits for Individuals Can Lower Household Carbon Emissions

Buying carbon offsets and renewable energy credits (RECs) are two ways to lower the effective carbon emissions of a business or organization, but now, thanks to TerraPass, individuals can also purchase renewable energy credits for their households as well. According to the US Dept of Energy, the average American household consumes almost 11,000 kWh (11 MWh) of electricity annually, which has carbon emissions equivalent to the amount of carbon sequestered by over 6 acres of US forest over the course…

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Supercapacitors from Hemp Fiber Could Be Half the Cost

Hemp. Is there anything it can’t do? Hemp may not be able to save the world on its own, as some proponents claim, but it certainly can yield affordable and planet-friendly solutions for everything from building to clothing to food to paper products, and recent research suggests that it could also provide a low-cost material for high-tech energy storage. The future of energy storage, at least for mobile devices and electric vehicles, lies in the development of supercapacitors, which have…

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