Straw from agriculture could play an important role in the future energy mix for Germany. Up until now it has been underutilized as a biomass residue and waste material. These were the conclusions of a study conducted by the Thueringian Regional Institute for Agriculture, the German Biomass Research Center, and the Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research.
The predominant view is that CO2 is a waste product, and a polluting one at that, even though small amounts are used to carbonate fizzy drinks, or to make urea or useful industrial solvents. But because of our fossil fuel energy use, we have large amounts of CO2 available that could be put to better use as a resource. This could be done without disrupting the natural carbon cycle, while reusing the carbon to create new products would also decrease fossil fuel use.
Much more is expected of cars and trucks than in the past. Pollution has been cut dramatically and fuel efficiency has risen. That's a difficult feat for manufacturers to pull off, since equipment to reduce pollution typically adds weight, potentially reducing fuel economy.
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) today established an energy storage target of 1,325 megawatts for Pacific Gas and Electric Company, Southern California Edison, and San Diego Gas and Electric by 2020, with installations required no later than the end of 2024.
The EU-funded project BRITER-WATER ('Market replication of bamboo remediation of food industry effluent grey water for re-use') looked at developing and demonstrating an innovative wastewater treatment system using bamboo.
Researchers based at Princeton University found that Earth's terrestrial ecosystems have absorbed 186 billion to 192 billion tons of carbon since the mid-20th century, which has significantly contained the global temperature and levels of carbon in the atmosphere.
In the coming years, the Netherlands will have to work hard on Smart Grids, intelligent local networks with new storage capacity for green electricity. It will thus be possible to counter the impending instability caused by the increasing power surges of electricity from wind turbines and solar cells. Large numbers of locally installed batteries should accommodate the increasing fluctuations in the electricity grid that are inherent to sun and wind energy.
A little amount of appropriately prepared powder is poured in water polluted with phenol and cellulose. A bit of the sun and after fifteen minutes harmful compounds disappear, and the powder can be filtered off and reused. Sounds like a fairy tale? Perhaps, but it is not magic, only a masterly use of chemistry and physics by researchers from the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw.
Creating sustainable cities requires technical, organizational and financial innovations, in order both to organize urban systems and to establish key business models. These are created when stakeholders collaborate across disciplines to bring creative approaches to new technologies. Fraunhofer's 'Morgenstadt - city of the future' initiative provides the space required to facilitate this kind of innovation and active work.
The use of solar panels to produce toilets hot water is standard practice, but researchers at the Madrid Universities Carlos III and Politécnica suggest that they may also be used to provide large offices with heating in the winter and air conditioning in the summer.
European Union Member States are showing mixed progress towards three climate and energy targets for 2020, even though the EU as a whole could reduce greenhouse gases emissions by 21% in 2020 with the set of national measures already adopted. These findings come from new European Environment Agency (EEA) assessments.