Spanish Firm has New Solar Power Vision for Az

PHOENIX – Until now, visions of Arizona homes powered by renewable energy have centered mostly on rooftop solar panels or huge solar power plants in the desert.

A Spanish company setting up operations in the Valley of the Sun is promoting a new vision: developments built around generating stations providing solar power by day and generator power, preferably running on renewable fuels, after the sun goes down.

Aora Solar offers a community–scale power facility that can be built on a half acre and can generate 100 kilowatts, enough for between 60 and 100 homes. The centerpiece is a 100–foot–tall, tulip–shaped tower that an array of mirrors hits with sunlight to turn a turbine with superheated air.

Zev Rosenzweig, the company’s CEO, said the American Southwest is an ideal location for the technology because the plants use little water and can capitalize on the region’s abundant sunshine. The technology is in use at a plant in Israel and at a plant that is awaiting commissioning and certification in Spain.

Continue reading: New Solar Vision for Az


Solar-Powered Ski Lift, Cleaner Airplane Toilets

Tiny Tenna, Switerland, nestled in the mountains between Chur and the Via Mala in the canton of Graubünden has erected one of the first solar-powered ski lifts. Theirs is unique with solar panels lining the liftline. And, knowing the mountain roads and steep terrain in this part of Switzerland, I’m not sure that tourists winding along the mountain roads won’t end up using more energy getting to the resort than the resort saves on the solar-powered lift.

With a mere 112 inhabitants, Tenna is an agricultural village that relies only on solar and hydroelectricity for energy. In the past two years, the number of solar panels in the town has more than doubled, occupying almost every rooftop and cow barn around. So, when it came time to restore the town’s old ski lift, solar power made the most sense.

The lift, which they began building in December 2009 and started operating on Dec. 17, 2011, extends 1,640 feet up the mountain and is expected to produce more than 90,000 kilowatts per year. On sunny days, the lift produces more energy than it consumes, according to Montalta. Clean energy, however, isn’t cheap; it cost about $1.5 million to build the green endeavor. Tenna will be able to use the stored energy for other means and is hoping the lift brings more skiers and tourists to the region.

Cleaner toilets help save BA £20m

When British Airways asked their workers about how the airline might save fuel to save money the executives were astounded with hundreds of fuel-saving ideas that have meant more than $31 million in savings to the airline’s bottom line.

More than 200 fuel-saving ideas were submitted by pilots, cabin crew, engineers and ground staff.

Some of the more unusual suggestions included replacing glass wine bottles with plastic, reducing the amount of water carried onboard, and descaling toilet pipes on Boeing 747 and 777s. The latter suggestion saved £600,000 as a result of reduced weight – and also improved the performance of the toilets.

The airline has also employed more conventional methods such as reducing the use of auxiliary power units, single engine taxiing and performance improvement packages on more than 40 777s. In total the savings were worth over £20 million.


How To Have A Green Holiday

Green towell

Image via Wikipedia


Sea bag

Image via Wikipedia


Guest Post

Of late, you can see people considering the green agenda seriously thanks to the ongoing and growing concerns for the environment and its awareness in the masses. The term green has now become a major buzzword for environmentalists and activists working for this issue. The green revolution has embarked a new lifestyle by making everything green.
You can therefore see people choosing recycling products, saying no to plastics, preferring carpool ideas for commuting at workplace and many more such measures under the tag of green. So you will see people protecting the planet in various ways, this certainly includes going for a green holiday. They have started visiting the environment friendly places for the excursions and holidays. If you are planning for any holiday, try having a green holiday by these tips and ideas as discussed below:

At your Destination:
When you stay at a hotel, make sure you only use required things. You can reuse your towels rather than asking for a new one several times a day. You can have the privilege of getting endless bath towels and other amenities; however, you should try to resist this temptation. Similarly, you should take shorter showers and at the same time avoid wasting water. You can also think of carrying soaps from your home and think of refilling the shampoo bottles. Further, avoid using the disposable cameras; instead use rechargeable batteries. Read more »

Cincinnati Could Be Completely Powered By Renewables This Year

Cincinnati is working on a new power aggregation deal right now that could lead to the entire city being powered from 100 percent renewable energy sources. The deal, city officials say, could be finalized within the coming months and be in place for consumers by summer 2012.

Such a move would make Cincinnati the largest city in the United States to have its energy supply come from 100 percent renewable sources, and it might be accomplished without any significant cost difference for ratepayers.

The way it would work, is by requiring power providers to include quotes for both the cheapest electricity available and 100 percent renewable electricity. In Oak Park, Ill., for example, the bids came back so competitive that city officials decided to go with the 100 percent renewable solution.

The movement towards sustainability has evidently picked up steam in Cincinnati as of late. At the first of two required public hearings, about 70 people came out to speak in favor of using completely renewable energy sources, and the environmental advocacy group Greenpeace flew a hot air ship over Cincinnati last week advocating for such change.

Even if the response to the city’s RFP does not come back as favorable as Oak Park’s, city officials may be able to structure the deal to offer consumers a choice between the cheapest electricity option and a 100 percent renewable electricity option.

“There are a lot of things Cincinnati is doing to position itself as a leader in sustainability and going green – both in the public and private sectors,” Falkin concluded. “This is a significant part of that total package in terms of branding Cincinnati as a progressive city, and cities across the country may start to look to adopt the Cincinnati solution for energy.”


Swing Along Green Power

The Giraffe Street Lamp is a very cute self-sustaining swing design that provides illumination at night. It harnesses kinetic energy each time you swing and as a double back up, utilizes the solar panel hood to soak some more energy goodness. It’s a very clever design that interweaves play and eco sense into the urban environment. Something that our future generation may as well get used to!