17 December 2009

Boring science says seas may rise 8 meters, and other company, industry, supply chain, investment and government news

Top Stories

Probabilistic assessment of sea level during the last interglacial stage.reliability high.
"With polar temperatures ~3–5 °C warmer than today, the last interglacial stage (~125 kyr ago) serves as a partial analogue for 1–2 °C global warming scenarios." "We find a 95% probability that global sea level peaked at least 6.6 m higher than today during the last interglacial; it is likely (67% probability) to have exceeded 8.0 m but is unlikely (33% probability) to have exceeded 9.4 m. . . . The results highlight the long-term vulnerability of ice sheets to even relatively low levels of sustained global warming." From Nature (abstract only, unless you pay). [Scientists write very non-scary headlines. But what this science-speak abstract says is "be afraid". Last time global temperatures were in the range of the current "2 °C above pre-industrial levels" scenario, sea levels were probably 8 to 9 meters higher than they are today. Such sea levels would have horrendous impacts on global civilization. This site is one of the few that even allows viewing an 8-m-rise scenario.]

Climate legislation will reduce budget deficit: CBO.reliability high.
The analysis of the budgetary impact of the Kerry-Boxer climate change bill, S. 1733, by the Congressional Budget Office says it would reduce the federal budget deficit over the period 2010-2019 and would not increase the federal deficit in any of the four 10-year periods following 2019. See NRDC blog. PDF of report here. [Report also points out that the legislation asks states, municipalities and the private sector to spend hundreds of millions of non-federal money. Impact on their budgets not revealed.]

VC Investment In Cleantech Is Quickly Recovering.reliability high.
"VC investment in cleantech shot up sequentially in the third quarter of 2009, almost fully recovering from the go-go days of 2008 after a collapse earlier this year. Venture capital investment rose last quarter to $897.5 million, up 89% from $474.8 million in the previous quarter". From Business Insider.

Companies, Industries, Markets and Supply Chains

Eko launches new two-wheelers.reliability high.
India's EKO Vehicles has launched two new products: "Strike" is a battery-powered two-wheeler that will sell for around Rs. 22,000 ($470) and is low-powered, not incurring road tax or requiring registration. U.S.-based Emerging Vehicle Technologies Inc. has partnered with Eko for the development of a hybrid two-wheeler, with both battery power and a 70cc gasoline engine, which will sell for around Rs. 40,000 ($850). See The Hindu. Related articles here and here.

P&G targets sustainable future.reliability high.
Interview with Rick Hughes, vice president of global procurement at Procter & Gamble. "'We’re working with our own manufacturing operations and laboratory/office sites to ensure that we’re making progress against internal environmental metrics,' he tells Sustainable Sourcing. 'We’re bringing innovative, more sustainable energy sources to feed manufacturing needs; utilizing external supply capability to reduce or reuse unshippable by-product streams; and reducing our energy usage and consequently our carbon footprint.'" Hughes represents purchasing on the company’s Corporate Sustainability Leadership Council – "a body that takes responsibility for the firm’s broader sustainability program." "'We've established a Supplier Sustainability Council – which engages closely with a cross-section of some of our leading external business partners,' Hughes says. 'This Supplier Council advises P&G so we can fully leverage the perspective of our leading suppliers to drive more complete solutions.'" From Sustainable Sourcing.

'Green' wine needs clearer definition, experts say.reliability high.
"Wines made with environmentally sensitive methods in the vineyard or winery are increasing in number in the marketplace, but also increasing are consumer sensitivity to the price of such wines, confusion over their greenness and claims of sustainability, according to experts this morning at a large conference on green wine." "Ann Thrupp, manager for sustainability and organic development for Fetzer and Bonterra Vineyards in Mendocino County, said the wine industry must be cautious in the desire to display its efforts to consumers. 'There’s a lot of competition on who can be more green,' she said. 'Hopefully, we can improve without being seen as greenwashing.'" More comments and info on the subject. See North Bay Business Journal.

Government and Regulation

Biden Supports $5 Billion in Tax Credits for Energy.reliability high.
The White House is urging Congress to enact "a $5 billion expansion of a tax-credit program to encourage manufacture of wind, solar and other energy technology. The credit, which builds on a $2.3 billion program that is part of this year’s $787 billion economic stimulus, may benefit companies that expand production in the U.S." "the administration is working with Congress to pass the new tax credits by early next year." See Bloomberg.

Geek Corner

Top 7 Best Green iPhone Apps.reliability medium.
Poster picks top seven, including Good Guide app, Kindle App, a pet tree, 3rdwhale’s FindGreen app, Locavore, and the native map app and compass functions. See Inhabitat.

[Crossposted from HaraBara.com courtesy of HaraBara, Inc. Copyright © 2009 HaraBara, Inc.]