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Features: North America

18 February 2014

Smart technologies that help enterprises cut carbon and costsp

Growth and sustainability aren’t always associated. As enterprises and economies grow, so too do demands for energy. However, things are changing and thanks to ever more sophisticated mobile technologies, the two goals of growth and sustainability are becoming less disparate, says Christèle Delbé, group head of sustainability, Vodafone.

15 January 2014

Why 2014 is a good time to be in the lighting control businessp

Network based lighting controls have failed to gain much traction over the last 5 years despite the benefits that they can deliver for improving operating costs and reducing CO2 emissions. So why will the influx of LED lighting into the commercial building market open up new opportunities for controls?

25 November 2013

Energy innovation requires an ecosystem that ties global firms with SMEs

Of all the companies in the world with a value of more than $10bn, only 14 have sustained high 'innovation premium' rankings consistently since 1995, according to research undertaken by Hal Gregersen, professor of innovation and leadership at INSEAD. Yet innovation is the driver of corporate growth and the key to unlocking greater value.

1 November 2013

US wind industry rebounds following ‘painful slowdown’ in 2013p

The US wind energy industry will finish 2013 with “strong momentum” for installations in the new year, following a "painful slowdown" at the beginning of 2013 as result of the scheduled expiration of the federal wind energy Production Tax Credit.

11 September 2013

Renewable energy can bring security of energy supply to vulnerable import dependent nations

The need for a secure and reliable energy supply is a seldom mentioned but very important driver for many nations moving towards clean and renewable energy supply. Paradoxically, the very factors that have made many nations dependent on imported energy, like being surrounded by water, can work to their benefit since many island nations have great potential for marine energy, says Anders Jansson, co-founder and CEO of Minesto.

22 August 2013

Food production under spotlight as yield rates slowp

While rising grain yields have replaced area expansion as the principal source of growth in world production, the pace has slowed during the last two decades with fears that more countries are facing issues over sustainable food production.

2 July 2013

Adding intelligence to occupancy detectionp

It's a gnawing frustration of modern office life. You're sitting quietly — too quietly — in an office or carrel, and suddenly the lights go off. Grrr! Installed to save energy, the room's occupancy detector has determined that no one is around, so it signals the lights to turn off. For 30 years, occupancy sensors have relied primarily on motion detection. But now there's something new, writes the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s Bill Scanlon.

17 June 2013

Crossing the climate linep

Earlier this month, a remote monitoring system in Hawaii recorded the first time in human history that the daily average for carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere hit over 400 parts per million (ppm). Crossing the 400ppm line is not inherently meaningful, other than reminding us that we are on a path to a place we don’t want to go.

2 May 2013

Marine energy is too clean to be ignoredp

Anders Jansson, CEO of Minesto, shares his views on why marine energy is ‘the best of the best’ and says new technology that can harvest energy from low velocity ocean and tidal currents can multiply the sector’s potential.

25 April 2013

Smart grid market outperforms in 2012 but sustainability looks fragilep

World smart grid sales climbed to $36.5bn in 2012 a growth of 30 per cent on 2011 and M&A activity reached $19.5bn almost doubling the value of deals in the previous year, according to memoori’s latest report. This confirms that solid progress has been made in the last three years but other findings show that all is not well.

16 April 2013

Change is in the air at NREL’s Wind Centerp

The National Wind Technology Center (NWTC) is at the nexus of a changing landscape, where the mountains meet the plains. It's also where changes in the wind industry are being previewed, writes the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s David Glickson.

1 March 2013

Smart grid thrives in 2012, but framework still not therep

World smart grid sales at installed prices climbed to $36.5bn in 2012 a growth of 30 per cent on 2011 and M&A activity reached $19.5bn almost doubling the value of deals in the previous year, according to the latest report from sector specialist Memoori.

20 February 2013

Making the right communications choice for smart meter technologyp

As the roll-out of smart meters takes place across Europe, governments have to make a decision on the primary communication technologies that will be used to connect the meters to utility companies. The choice of infrastructure will have significant short and long-term effects on the cost, efficiency and carbon footprint of the smart grid and its ability to deliver enhanced customer value. Nick Kamen, head of energy and utilities sector, with Vodafone, discusses the options being considered to facilitate smart meter connectivity.

18 February 2013

Doubling energy productivity means focusing on efficiencyp

Researchers at the US Department of Energy's (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have long understood that using energy more efficiently can be just as beneficial as finding new ways to produce energy more efficiently.

24 January 2013

Device tosses out unusable PV wafersp

© Dennis Schroeder Silicon wafers destined to become photovoltaic cells can take a bruising through assembly lines, as they are oxidised, annealed, purified, diffused, etched, and layered to reach their destinies as efficient converters of the sun's rays into useful electricity, writes Bill Scanlon from US National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

11 January 2013

Smart grid drives further integration across connected real estatep

2012 was a seminal year for three industries that share some fast moving technologies and vertical markets, Electronic Security, Energy Management and the emerging Smart Grid, writes Allan McHale, author of smart grid blog Memoori.

4 January 2013

Out-the-box thinking pushes solar efficienciesp

It takes outside-the-box thinking to outsmart the solar spectrum and set a world record for solar cell efficiency. The solar spectrum has boundaries and immutable rules. No matter how much solar cell manufacturers want to bend those rules, they can't. Bill Scanlon from US National Renewable Energy Laboratory asks, how can we make a solar cell that has a higher efficiency than the rules allow?

17 December 2012

Can data slow down climate change?p

Development needs data: water security, oceans governance and food security need data, information, knowledge, networks and imagination to shift power in the public interest, according to James Cameron, chairman of Climate Change Capital, who shares his perspective on climate change.

21 November 2012

Life after an IPO: Tesla tells how it is still focused on growthp

While high-profile bankruptcies in cleantech companies such as Solyndra are denting investor confidence in green markets, Tesla Motors tells NewNet how since its initial public offering (IPO) it has gone from strength to strength and is now able to pay back its $465m US loan early as it moves towards profitability.

13 November 2012

US offshore wind finally on trackp

Despite numerous setbacks and the expected expiration of the Production Tax Credit, US offshore wind pioneers are feeling positive about the fledging industry.

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