13 January 2010

Cement goes green? And who pays for upgrading office buildings? Plus other industry, company, market and tribal news

Top Stories

Finding a Way to Pay for Green Makeovers.reliability high.
Standard lease language for commercial space in New York City discourages landlords from making capital improvements that will save energy. Such improvements might lower tenants' bills, but at the landlord's cost. Sean Neill "Working with the N.R.D.C. and another advocacy group, the Environmental Defense Fund, Mr. Neill’s firm, called Cycle-7, is preparing to discuss with large commercial tenants ways to revise the standard leases used in commercial real estate, developing a way to share the costs and benefits of energy upgrades. . . . Many landlords and environmentalists expect retrofits will become basic to commercial leasing as the city’s new law takes effect and as more information becomes publicly available about the energy waste in buildings." From The New York Times.

Verizon Wireless: We've Got An Open IP Smart Grid Network, Too.reliability medium.
"Verizon Wireless announced that it is partnering with Ambient Corporation to offer customers an 'Open Smart Grid Communications Architecture,' which they bill as 'an open communications network' for utilities’ smart grid programs. Ambient, which builds network gear and software based on IP will be supplying the smart grid network portion, and the architecture will run over Verizon Wireless' 3G network." See earth2tech.

Companies, Industries, Markets and Supply Chains

How to Market Green to the Wired Generation.reliability medium.
Relates results of research on marketing green products to 18-to-24-year-olds. "According to our research, this wireless, hyper-connected, rather-text-than-talk age group relies on ads, product labels and news coverage for its green product information before performing a search on the Internet. . . . Nearly all consumers, not just 18- to 24-year-olds, want products and services that satisfy universal needs such as comfort, wellness and convenience. . . . Old-fashioned advertising and well-designed packaging are critical and should be the first steps in a green marketing program to ensure success. Even if your target is the wired generation." From GreenBiz blog.

A Cement Giant Tackles its CO2 Emissions.reliability medium.
How "Cemex, one of the world’s largest producers of building materials, is angling to bring down its carbon dioxide emissions and perhaps wind up with some credits it can sell." The principal change discussed is substituting renewable fuels for coal and coke. "'It turns out to be a sound investment when you factor in the emissions reduction credits,' Mr. Farías said." More on specific actions. "'This is our vision of the future,' he said. 'We’re trying to be prepared.'" From New York Times Green Inc. blog.

Hospitality chain announces first low-carbon restaurant.reliability medium.
Whitbread will open its second eco-friendly budget hotel later this year. "Next to the hotel Whitbread plans to open its first low-carbon restaurant, a 220-cover Beefeater open grill restaurant. The site will include ground-source heat pumps, rainwater harvesting and grey water recycling, high-efficiency thermal insulation, low-flow showerheads, heat-recovery, automated light controls and sun pipes for light." See edie.net.

SC Johnson Launches Year-Long Wind Energy Pilot Program at Headquarters.reliability high.
"'The use of renewable energy is essential to making a difference in the world and conducting business in a responsible way,' said Chairman and CEO Fisk Johnson, the company's fifth generation leader. 'We hope our use of wind energy will inspire businesses in Racine and other cities to find new, sustainable solutions for reducing energy use.'" See PR Newswire. [This is just a research project with three small turbines generating an insignificant amount of power. But why not try and get as much green image benefit as possible?]

Government and Regulation

Indian tribe hopes to profit from solar energy.reliability high.
"The 3,000 members of the Jemez Pueblo are on the verge of building the nation's first utility-scale solar plant on tribal land, a project that could bring in millions of dollars. . . . The project — which would cost about $22 million, financed through government grants, loans and tax credits — could bring in around $25 million over the next 25 years. That could help the tribe improve its antiquated drinking water system and replace the lagoons it uses to treat wastewater." More on various tribal renewable energy projects. See MSNBC from AP. [The Navajo Nation has "cleaned up" on coal and uranium (irony intended). Maybe other nations can find a better way. Query: Can these nations qualify to generate tradable carbon credits under the Clean Development Mechanism? They are sovereign nations after all, and mostly quite underdeveloped.]

[Crossposted from HaraBara.com courtesy of HaraBara, Inc. Copyright © 2010 HaraBara, Inc.]