23 December 2009

Real estate economics, sources of CO2, Tata's promised cuts, other company and government information, and the "not green news"

Top Stories

Note to Investors: Energy Efficiency Measures Can Enhance Value of Real Estate Portfolios.reliability high.
"a new report, 'Energy Efficiency in Real Estate Portfolios: Opportunities for Investors,' says that proven, existing efficiency technologies in everything from lighting to climate control and more can unlock the untapped reserves of efficiency gains buried in many real estate holdings." "'This report documents what common sense tells us – that an energy efficient building is a more marketable building,' said Ceres President Mindy Lubber, who also directs the Investor Network on Climate Risk." More highlights of report. From Ceres. PDF of report here.

What Are the Amounts of Greenhouse Gases Released in Your Area and What Are the Sources?.reliability high.
"The European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) has developed a high resolution digital view of artificial greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for any 10 x 10 kms area in the world. Using JRC's work on emissions and Google Earth, this new tool allows the visualisation of the levels of emissions locally from 1970 to 2005 and the identification of the main sources." See Science Daily. Access the overlays here.

Companies, Industries, Markets and Supply Chains

India's Tata Steel to reduce carbon emissions.reliability high.
" 'Our target is to bring it down to 1.8 tonnes [of CO2 per tonne of steel produced] by 2012 and to 1.5 tonnes by 2020,' Managing Director H.M. Nerurkar told reporters on the sidelines of a CII conference in Kolkata. He said Tata Steel's carbon dioxide emissions were already below global industry averages of about 2.2 tonnes per tonne of steel. He said that while it was relatively easy to bring down carbon emissions to 1.7 tonnes per tonne of steel, it would be difficult to lower them below that." From Reuters.

Smart Ed's cell phone connection; RWE offering 22 kW home chargers.reliability medium.
"When the first second-generation Smart Eds were handed over to customers in Berlin last week, Daimler and German utility RWE also announced a few details about how the all-electric ForTwos can interact with with the Internet. Smart Ed drivers are assigned a personal contract code that can be used online and with cell phones to share information (e.g., billing and charge status) and can also pre-heat or pre-cool the car if it's plugged in. In the future, the Internet connection should also be able to be used to assign charging times to mesh with the utility's lowest rates." From Autoblog Green.

For Brewery, Solar Water Heater Means Twice as Much Beer for Same Energy Cost.reliability high.
"Central Waters Brewery in Amherst, Wisc., has been able to double its beer production without spending any more on natural gas after installing a solar water heater" More on renewable energy projects at brewers and distillers. See Environmental Leader.

Government and Regulation

U.S. cracks down on lung-harming ship emissions.reliability high.
"U.S. environmental regulators on Tuesday finalized engine and fuel standards for U.S. flagged ships to cut emissions that cause lung diseases and save more than $100 billion in health costs. By 2030 the strategy should cut annual emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOX) from large oil tankers, cargo ships and cruise vessels by about 1.2 million tons and particulate matter emissions, or soot, by about 143,000 tons, the Environmental Protection Agency said." "The EPA is also working with international organizations to control emissions from non-U.S. flagged ships" in the covered coastal zone. From Reuters. [Note how EPA emphasizes health and health cost benefits. Makes pollution control much easier to sell.]

California Ports Not Prepared for Sea Level Rise from Climate Change.reliability medium.
"A new staff report to the California State Lands Commission reveals that most of the state’s 40 ports and shipping hubs surveyed are not prepared for the rise in sea level expected because of climate change." The report urges planners to demand that projects show how they will deal with sea level rises of 16 to 55 inches (0.4-1.4 meters). From 2Sustain. PDF of report here.

Bank of China goes green.reliability high.
"The People's Bank of China said today it plans to control bank lending, guiding credit to new energy projects and restricting loans to heavy polluters: 'We will strictly control lending to highly polluting, energy-intensive industries, to sectors with overcapacity and to new projects.'" See The Globe and Mail.

Washington, D.C., Requires Building Energy Use Metrics.reliability high.
"Building owners in Washington, D.C., will start measuring the energy use of commercial properties on Jan. 1, 2010, under a new law aimed at reducing energy use and costs for building owners and tenants" Public buildings over 10,000 sq. ft. started the program in October. "The new law also directs all commercial buildings to measure their energy use with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Energy Star Portfolio Manager tool." See Environmental Leader.

U.S. Airlines, Industry Group Sue U.K. Over Emissions Plan.reliability high.
"Three U.S. airlines and the Air Transport Association sued the U.K. government to challenge the first stage of the country's implementation of European Union emission-trading regulations." "The EU is adding airlines to the European emissions-trading system, the world's biggest greenhouse-gas market, in 2012 to fight climate change" Comments suggest little chance of overturning the regulations. From BusinessWeek.

Not So Green

French company CMA-CGM facilitating destruction of Madagascar's rainforests.reliability medium.
"Delmas, a subsidiary of French shipping giant CMA-CGM, is facilitating the destruction of Madagascar's endangered rainforests by providing transport services for timber illegally logged from the country's national parks, report multiple sources that have been investigating the illegal rosewood trade on the Indian Ocean island nation." See wildmadagascar.org.

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