23 March 2010

Green taxis, keeping food from landfills, and other company, industry and government info

Top Stories

Green advertising rules are made to be broken.reliability medium.
"From this week, we have a new checklist of dodgy green claims that advertisers should avoid. The list comes from the UK government's Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). ... Among the biggest bugbears revealed in the consultation document ... are general, untestable claims like products being "eco-" or "environmentally friendly". ... Defra says green claims should be "clear, accurate, relevant and verifiable". That's a good checklist for people who want to comply, but hardly a legal rottweiler to combat cynical greenwash." Column in The Guardian. PDF of DEFRA report here.

Halfway to a Green Taxi Fleet in San Francisco.reliability medium.
Post by SF Mayor Gavin Newsom on success of his green taxi measure, the "Green Taxi Law requiring San Francisco  cab companies to lower their greenhouse gas emissions 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2012. ... I am pleased to announce that we are well on our way to exceeding this goal. The city's taxi fleet as of this morning is comprised of 55 percent alternative fuel vehicles, including hybrids and compressed natural gas vehicles. These fuel-efficient vehicles have reduced gas consumption by 2.9 million gallons per year and lowered greenhouse gas emissions by 35,000 tons annually." Interesting details about the economics of the transition. See GreenBiz blog.

Companies, Industries, Markets and Supply Chains

Chrysler developing all-electric Fiat 500EV for U.S. market.reliability high.
"the automaker has officially announced that it will engineer and produce the Fiat 500EV for the United States, starting in 2012. As of this writing, details about the 500EV are slim. We do know that the powerplant will be comprised of three main systems – an advanced lithium-ion battery, high-power electric powertrain module and an EV control unit to manage overall power flow. The 500EV will be developed and engineered at Chrysler's headquarters in Auburn Hills, Michigan." Includes press release. See Autoblog Green.

Chevron tests solar power projects at two sites.reliability high.
"'We are looking at new and emerging technologies,' said Mark Puccinelli, a project manager with Chevron Energy Solutions. 'We wanted to study technologies that would work for external customers and get experience with these kinds of technologies.' ... 'By bringing together seven emerging solar technologies, Project Brightfield represents one of the most comprehensive solar energy tests of its kind and is an innovative approach to evaluating new technologies,' said Des King, president of Chevron Technology Ventures." Story in San Jose Mercury News.

Consumers Buy More Efficient Refrigerators, but Keep the Old Ones Humming.reliability medium.
"The report notes that while the average refrigerator in the United States uses three-quarters less energy than in 1975, despite being 20 percent larger, “the number of U.S. households with two or more refrigerators has increased, and the secondary refrigerators are typically older and less efficient than the primary models.”" See New York Times Green Inc. blog. Access the report (registration required) here. [Like buying a Prius and giving the Buick to Junior. Not exactly a green move.]

London receives £362,000 grant to save food from landfill.reliability high.
"London's recycling board has allocated cash to help divert 300,000 tonnes of edible food from costly landfill sites each year as part of a drive to reduce waste in the capital. A £362,000 grant from the London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB) will ensure that the equivalent of 800,000 meals is distributed to homeless and other vulnerable groups of Londoners rather than ending up in the bin. ... The FareShare Community Food Network provides a paid-for collection service to the food and drink industry to distribute food that no longer has a commercial value but is fit for purpose to local community groups. The funding will pay for a new depot in north-west London." See The Guardian story. [One person's waste is another person's raw material. The supply chain goes both ways.]

Government and Regulation

Colorado Increases Renewables Requirements.reliability medium.
"The new law requires 30 percent of large utilities’ electricity to come from renewables by 2020. The previous requirement was 20 percent by 2020. The higher target 'will continue to position Colorado as a national pacesetter for creating jobs, strengthening our economy and protecting our environment,' wrote the governor, Bill Ritter, in an op-ed article in a Colorado newspaper on Sunday. ... Mark Stutz, a spokesman for Xcel Energy, which serves about 70 percent of Colorado’s population, said that the utility supported Colorado’s increased target. The new law also requires that 'distributed generation' — small, dispersed electricity sources — equate to 3 percent of each utility’s electricity sales." See New York Times Green Inc. blog.

Energy security worry to drive India's low-CO2 plan.reliability high.
"Worries over energy security will drive India's goal to slow the growth of its carbon emissions, the head of a government panel tasked with developing the country's low-carbon strategy said on Monday. Reserves of fossil fuels such as coal were fast running out, making it imperative for India to improve efficiency and accelerate renewable energy sources to keep the economy growing at a projected 8 to 9 percent annually, Kirit Parikh said. ... In India, any talk of a low-carbon economy was once seen as politically very risky, given the economic costs involved. But Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in January asked Parikh to begin charting a path to a greener economy. The panel's preliminary report is due next month and the final submission in September." Story in Reuters.

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