Environment Technology

Environment Technology

Renewable Energy and the Energy Transition

Posted by admin on September 28, 2012 in Renewable Energy with 6 Comments

The world is driven by fossil fuels like oil and gas. This has some negative repercussions: Rising energy prices due to decreasing deposits, dependence on unstable oil and gas producing regimes and Global Warming.
It becomes clear, that a revolution in the way how we produce and use energy is necessary. Central to this energy transition are new technologies, which produce energy from renewable sources such as wind or sun.
With Germany as an example, this clip shows what renewable energies are and how they work as well as what the concept of energy transition means.

The clip is part of the WissensWerte Project of the german non-profit organization /e-politik.de/ e.V.

By Jörn Barkemeyer and Jan Künzl

Editorial Laura Hörath

For more information about the WissensWerte project, please visit: http://www.edeos.org/en/index.html

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Duration : 0:8:59

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Lungren denies manmade global warming

Posted by admin on September 28, 2012 in Global Warming with 2 Comments

ThinkProgress TPhttp://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/api/users/8gxWfcyLNIlyt8BD7p2BUgNewsLungren denies manmade Global Warming

Duration : 0:2:7

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Emirates Environment – Emvironment

Posted by admin on September 28, 2012 in Environment Protection with 25 Comments

http://emirates.com/TheEnvironment – The Emirates Group has much to be environmentally proud of, including award-winning Al Maha conservation resort in Dubai, Wolgan Valley – environmentally sensitive resort in Australia, our large industrial recycling efforts and, most importantly our young and advanced aircraft fleet.

Emirates is also developing the Cap Ternay Resort & Spa in the Seychelles which will feature a multitude of environmental initiatives including a maritime sanctuary

Please check more at http://www.emirates.com/english/about/emvironment/emvironment.aspx

Duration : 0:4:59

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Congressman Canseco: What’s Wrong with Washington

Posted by admin on September 28, 2012 in Clean Energy with No Comments

It’s high noon. And Congressman Canseco has it out for the middle-class. Canseco voted to cut investments in Clean Energy, like wind and solar that could create good-paying Texas jobs. But Canseco voted for new tax giveaways to millionaires…like himself. And was slapped with liens for unpaid taxes. Congressman Canseco…what’s wrong with Washington. The League of Conservation Voters is responsible for the content of this advertising.

Duration : 0:0:31

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Renewable Energy – Lesson 8 – Living Off the Grid

Posted by admin on September 28, 2012 in Renewable Energy with No Comments

Considering the current state of the economy, it is no surprise that a significant amount of people are doing everything they can to cut costs and to save money. Traditional cost cutting methods include downsizing vehicles, cutting out vacations, buying cheaper food, eating out less and so forth. However, a growing number of people are turning to alternative and Renewable Energy to save money.

Advances in technology have made renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power much more efficient, affordable and viable for the average person. In some cases, people take using renewable energy to provide the electricity to their homes to the next step, disconnecting from their local electrical service and going entirely off the grid.

Living off the grid is not a step to be taken impulsively or rashly, but rather one to be well thought out and planned for. If one lives in the country and has the space and ability to install a very large wind generator, then going off the grid on wind power could work. However, living off the grid on solar power is a much more realistic and safe route to take. Modern solar panels are very efficient and can now provide significant amounts of power even on a cloudy day.

Living off the grid on solar power is possible with discipline and the correct preparation. Converting to a tankless hot water heater is an important preparation to going off the grid. Heating water with an electric or even a gas hot water heater is very expensive. Tankless heaters are dramatically more efficient and reduce the electric load. Another important preparation for living off the grid is to get set up to dry clothes on a clothes line to avoid using the clothes dryer. The dryer uses a huge amount of electricity to get the clothes dry. This is easy to do outdoors in the summer, and there are many types of drying wracks available to dry the clothes on indoors in the winter.

Yet another preparation to living off the grid is to replace all the light bulbs in the house with energy efficient fluorescent bulbs. Lastly, one should make every effort to make the house airtight, so heat and cold are retained and do not leak out or in the house due to old inefficient window, unsealed doors, and improperly insulated walls. Make sure there is good weather stripping around all doors and windows and make sure there is an efficient programable thermostat installed.

Living off the grid with solar power is certainly possible, but it requires some important preparations to make sure that the house is as energy efficient as possible since there is no backup source of power once the solar cells have been depleted between charges. The preparation and installation of the system can be expensive initially, but living off the grid saves so much money in electrical bills that these costs are often recovered withing the first two years of being off the grid.

David J Hughes

Big 3 Face Global Warming Goad

Posted by admin on September 28, 2012 in Global Warming with 27 Comments

The top executives of the largest automakers around the globe and the head of the United Auto Workers (UAW) union are set to testify before Congress this month during a high-profile hearing on climate change and the clamor for automakers to do more measures to curb global warming.

Rick Wagoner, the chairman and CEO of General Motors Corp., and Jim Press, the president of Toyota Motor Corp.’s North American division, have agreed to testify 14 March before the House Energy and Commerce Committee. The said committee is chaired by U.S. Rep. John Dingell, D-Dearborn.

The Ford Motor Co. and DaimlerChrysler AG’s Chrysler Group have also expressed their assent to participate in the hearing. Ford will be sending its executive chairman, Bill Ford Jr., to participate in the happenings. Tom LaSorda, the Chrysler Group CEO, will also represent the automaker in the said hearing. Ron Gettelfinger, the president of UAW, will also appear at a separate session of the same hearing.

Dingell is calling the largest automakers to Washington to make a compromise to President George Bush’s proposal to increase fuel economy by four percent every year. This measure is aimed at reducing vehicle emissions that have been connected to global warming. The legislator’s aim is to limit greenhouse gas emissions that the automakers could sustain.

This is the very first time in recent years that top executives of the largest automakers have been called to the US Congress as a group regarding the Global Warming issues. The hearing will also tackle the opposition of the automakers to fuel economy standards. Critics in the industry said that the hearing could be likened to the appearance of tobacco company CEOs in 1994 to declare that nicotine was not addictive.

Automakers expressed their dissent to the idea of comparing them to tobacco executives. They noted that the auto industry has spent billions to improve the fuel efficiency of vehicles and does not oppose achievable increases. They added that the current corporate average fuel economy requirements, more commonly known and referred as CAFE, distort the market by forcing them to heavily discount smaller, more fuel-efficient cars to meet fleet-wide mandates.

“There is change in the air,” said Dave McCurdy, the current head of the Alliance of Automotive Manufacturers, which represents GM, Ford, DaimlerChrysler and Toyota among other companies. “We are going to be at the table. I often use the Oklahoma saying, ‘If you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu.'”

In a short span, automakers have faced mounting pressure from Congress and Bush administration. The said pressure is anchored on the goal of increasing fuel efficiency of vehicles and limit greenhouse gas emissions. This goal is estimated to cost the industry billions of dollars. Aside from this, the new rules could eventually force them to cease producing heavier vehicles in favor of hybrid models.

Dingell, one of four lawmakers who met with President Bush on energy policy, has told the top automakers about the need to be part of a broad-based reduction in carbon dioxide output from many industries. He added that his committee attempts to meet a July 4 target for a draft bill.

Excerpts of Dingell’s statement obtained by The News state: “I am proud of what this committee accomplished thirty years ago, however, we are now confronted with new and pressing questions,” pertaining to the original fuel economy law in 1975. “Faced with evidence that the globe is warming, is the current method of regulating the fuel economy of vehicles the most effective way to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide, from cars and trucks?” he further shares.

The global warming goad is a serious matter because every one is affected. With the greater burden imposed on the government and other sectors, the solution is not as easy as producing sophisticated auto engines and blending them to effective brakes, EBC pads and a number of systems. It takes intensive studies and a considerable sum for the goal to be realized.

Anthony Fontanelle

Now Pesticides in your Toothpaste

Posted by admin on September 28, 2012 in Environment Protection with 5 Comments


Pesticides, especially triclosan, which is almost a must in every toothpaste or soap now a days, can prove worse than the worst ever thought of scenario arising from bio warfare outbreaks. Emergence of super virus or super bacteria which will be resistant to most of antibiotics with the potential to wipe out world’s most of population can presumptively emerge from uncontrolled use of toiletries including soaps and tooth pastes containing antibacterial triclosan. The controversial chemical which was first introduced for floor mopping solutions in the hospital wards was introduced in most of the toothpastes, soaps, deodorants. Toothpaste manufactures started the advertisement campaign “fights tooth decay up to 12 hours after tooth brushing”. Nobody worth his name in toothpaste industry wanted to remain out of this game, result was that almost everyone by now has introduced triclosan in toothpastes. Environmental activists all over the world have now raised the issue of safety aspect of triclosan, but unfortunately in India so far no body has raised this question. Not all blame can be put on vested interests, ignorance and lack of sensitivity to the public cause in general is equally blame worthy. Environment protection agency of USA has put triclosan in the category of pesticides. In India consumers are not informed by the manufacturer that the product contains triclosan. Now clear cut evidence is emerging from research laboratories all over the world that triclosan can produce chloroform when it interacts with chlorinated tap water. The potential of chloroform to cause cancer is well documented. Exposure to ultra violet light (UV light) can add to this process the production of stable highly toxic dioxins with very high potential to cause cancer. These chemicals can cause not only cancer but also other effects like weakening of immune system, decreased fertility, altered hormonal and congenital birth defects. Triclosan is such a widely misused molecule by now that it has started showing up in human breast milk samples. A Swedish study conducted in 2002 confirmed this fact. Products containing Triclosan may be of some values in limited specified hospital settings but their use in normal healthy households have not shown any added advantage. In fact American Medical Association recommends avoiding the use of such chemicals in consumer products. Tons and Tons of Triclosan has gone down the drains. It is not entirely harmless. Bacteria will become resistant to it one day with devastating consequences for the whole of mankind. These bacteria that survive Triclosan do so with “Multidrug efflux pumps”. A multi drug efflux pump is a system designed by bacteria to shuttle various nasty compounds (including anti biotic) outside the cell. Freighting the most notorious bacteria in hospital acquired infections “staphylococus” is getting resistant to Triclosan. Futuristic terrorists will not be Mujahids Wielding Kalishanakovs but multidrug resitant bacteria and viruses, that we are helping evolve, Wittingly or unwittingly every common man is contributing for evolution of these future ‘terrorists’, the multidrug resistant bacteria. Even relatively small quantities of dioxins can have devastating effects. According to environmental protection agency of United States of America, Triclosan “Could be” and is “suspected to be” contaminated with dioxins. Dioxins can be found in Triclosan as impurities formed in the course of industrial production. Research workers when added Triclosan to river water and exposed it to ultraviolet light found that a significant portion of triclosan converted to Dioxins. Fears are genuine that ultraviolet light from the sun can convert Triclosan into cancer causing dioxins. In a country like India where untreated sewage is finding its way into rivers and lakes, this is a clear possibility. Urgent studies are required and the use of Triclosan should be stopped with immediate effect. Even in western developed countries where the population pressure is very low, the presence of Triclosan has started showing up in Ecological System. Whenever the toothpaste manufacturers sales executives are questioned on the safety aspect of Triclosan, the standard answer is that Triclosan in very high concentrations can prove carcinogenic not other wise but the facts are otherwise. Children often ingest lots of toothpastes! Yes. Chlorination of tap water in India is not standardized. Worse of all, the dioxins produced in the process are so stable that it takes decades to get rid off them, via human milk ! again Yes. So these dioxins can accumulate in body system over a period of time and the next generation gets quite a bit of them in natural transfer. Production of chloroform and dioxins may also be a problem in swimming pools where high concentration of chlorine can react to Triclosan residues on people’s skin. Soaps, toiletries, toothpastes containing Triclosan or other anti bacterial don’t promote good health. In fact it has been found that there is an increase in the frequency of allergies, asthma and Eczema in persons who have been raised in more sterile and hygienic environment. This became popular by known as a ‘Hygiene Hypothesis’. Similarly no definite correlation has been found between clean mouths and disease free mouths. Reports on the initiation of cancer in the mouth suggest that if a person is a smoker he stands 6 times more chances of cancer and chronic alcoholics are again 6 times as prone as smokers for cancer. But if a person is a smoker as well as chronic alcoholic, this person is 15 times more at risk for cancer. Now well imagine if the person is using a toothpaste containing Triclosan, uses tap water for brushing and the toothpaste contains. None of the waste water treatment plans in India or abroad is capable of removing Triclosan from water. Large quantities of Triclosan are being continuously discharged into the local water ways. In one United States of America Geological Survey study of 95 organic waste water contaminants in US streams triclosan was the most frequently found compounds and in some of the highest concentration observed. Fortunately our consumption levels of triclosan containing toiletries and soaps is less as compared to developed countries. Toothpaste are the only major contributors for this. But with population load many fold that of America, we are much more vulnerable to catastrophic accumulation of these toxic chemicals. Triclosan has proved highly toxic to algae. Because algae are the first step producers in aquatic ecosystem, researchers think that high levels of Triclosan discharged into the environment may destroy the balance of aquatic ecosystem. Other than developed countries, China has also started investigating the safety of such products. Marla Cone from Los Angles times writes in criticism of the US agencies that every year 200 tons of two compounds Triclosan and Triclo carbon are applied to agricultural lands throughout that country. Triclosan breaks down slowly which mean it accumulates in soil and perhaps water. This chemical is building up in environment. It has been in the environment for decades and every year we are loading tons in the environment. This is what we are going to hand over to our next generations. Apart from breast milk triclosan has also been found in fish in steams of Europe. We have not carried out proper surveys so far. Sampling from human milk may one day discourage breast feeding. Minute amounts of Triclosan that are found in the majority of America’s streams and rivers can be enough to disrupt thyroid function in frogs and perhaps also in humans. Frogs are very sensitive to thyroid hormone. Triclosan has a chemical structure similar to thyroid hormones. Frogs were chosen as a study model to study effect of Triclosan because frogs are particularly sensitive and effects show up in metamorphosis. Not only that Triclosan affects frogs it also has implication for people. People have to have the thyroid hormones in order to be healthy and Triclosan effects how the thyroid hormone works. Brain is very sensitive organ for thyroid hormone action and is very dependent on proper levels of thyroid hormone. Thyroid hormone is exact same chemical in frogs compared to humans. One drop of Triclosan in say as many as 300 Olympic Swimming Pools is enough for toxic effects !

Triclosan was considered absolutely safe until some times back when a New York Tech University report stated that Triclosan reacts with free chlorine in tap water to produce chloroform and lesser amounts of other compounds like 2,4-di-chlorophenol. These intermediates convert to dioxins upon exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Triclosan is chemically similar to dioxin class of compounds. Its production leads to small amounts of residual polychlorinated dioxins and polychlorinated furans which are contained in the products that we are using. The chemical and molecular structure of these compounds are similar to most toxic chemicals on earth, relating to dioxins and PCBs. Environmental protection agency of USA gives Triclosan high scores both as a human health risk and as an environmental risk.

Triclosan belongs to chlorophenol class of chemicals which is suspected to cause cancer in humans. Even in small amounts, phenols can lead to cold sweats, circulatory collapse, convulsions, coma and death even. In addition to that chlorinated hydrocarbon pesticides can be stored in body fat, sometimes accumulating to toxic levels. Triclosan is a registered pesticide with the US Environment Protection agency. Long term exposure to repeated use of many a pesticide products can damage the liver, kidneys, heart, lungs, suppress the immune system, hormonal disruption, paralysis, sterility and brain hemorrhage. Dioxin, PCBs, chlorophenols and many pesticides are categorized as persistent organic pollutants (POP). In other words, they persist in the environment and accumulate to higher and higher concentration with each step up the food chain. Virtually every creature on earth has a measured amount of these pollutants in the body fat. Once absorbed into the fat cells, it is nearly impossible to eliminate these compounds. Triclosan an essential ingredient in your tooth pastes is among this class of chemicals. Humans are at the top of the food chain. Vultures share this top position with us and they are already on their way out. Are we the next ones to go ? picture is scary but realism goes down hard.

Triclosan is a diphenyl ether (bis-phenol) derivative, known as either 2,4,4’- Trichloro-2’-hydroxydiphenyl ether or 5-Chloro-2-(2,4-dichlorophenoxy) phenol. It is related in structure to a number of bis-phenyl polychlorinated and bis-phenyl chlorophenyl compounds. Due principally to the synthesis chemistry of polychloro diphenyl ethers and phenoxy phenols there is the potential for the formation of small amounts of unwanted trace by-products which are of very serious concern.

Since triclosan is by its chemical structure a polychloro phenoxy phenol it is possible that several polychlorodibenzo-p-dioxins (dioxins) and polychloro–dibenzofurans (dibenzofurans) can be found in varying low level amounts, as synthesis, impurities in triclosan. Their relative concentrations as impurities can vary from batch to batch. This raises concerns because of the toxicity of dioxins and dibenzofurans.

The toxicity of dioxins and dibenzofurans varies with the position and number of chlorine atoms attached to the aromatic rings. In general, their toxicity increases with increasing chlorine substitution. Those dioxins and dibenzofurans that have chlorine atoms at the 2,3 and 7 positions are particularly toxic. Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin and tetrachlorodibenzofuran, which have chlorine atoms at the 2,3,7, and 8 positions, are considered the most toxic of the dioxins and dibenzofurans (4), with 2,3,7 and 8 positions, are considered the most toxic of the dioxins and dibenzofurans (4), with 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin referred to as one of the most toxic substances known.

As a result of the potential for the formation of dioxins and dibenzofurans as unwanted low level trace by-products the United States Pharma Copia, in Pharmacopeial Form, Volume 22, Number 3, Pharmacopeial Reviews and subsequently in Pharmacopeial Form, Volume 23, Number 5 has proposed a new monograph for the specific testing of triclosan. This proposed monograph details the assay and testing of USP triclosan. In addition to setting product specification standards and procedures to assay the purity and physical identity of USP triclosan, it also defines the limits and methods of testing for unwanted trace by -products which may be present. If the manufacturers are honest then the tests for unwanted by products should be conducted at the accredited laboratories for (1) Limit of 4-Chlorophenol and 2,4-Dichloro-phenol, (2) Limit of Triclosan Related Compound A (1,3,7-trichlorodibenzo-p-dioxin), Triclosan Related Compound B (2,8-dichlorodibenzo-p-dioxin), 2,8-Dichlorodibenzofuran, and 2,4,8-Trichlorodibenzo-furan, and (3) Limit of 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin and 2,3,7,8-Tetrachloro-dibenzofuran.

Laboratories capable of analyzing triclosan under cGMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) for dioxins and dibenzofurans employing isotope dilution high resolution gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (HRGC/MS), are required for the proposed testing.

Dr. Capt. Pardeep Kumar Sharma

Oral & Maxillo Facial Surgeon

E-mail : omfspardeep@yahoo.com.

(M) : 9888456296

Author of this Article is presently working as Medical Officer (Dental) at Civil Hospital Ludhiana

Pardeep Kumar Sharma

Advantages and Disadvantages of Renewable Energy

Posted by admin on September 28, 2012 in Clean Energy with 7 Comments

There are many energy sources today that are extremely limited in supply. Some of these sources include oil, natural gas, and coal. It is a matter of time before they will be exhausted.

Estimates are that they can only meet our energy demands for another fifty to seventy years. So in an effort to find alternative forms of energy, the world has turned to Renewable Energy sources as the solution. There are many advantages and disadvantages to this.

Renewable energy sources consist of solar, hydro, wind, geothermal, ocean and biomass. The most common advantage of each is that they are renewable and cannot be depleted. They are a Clean Energy, as they don’t pollute the air, and they don’t contribute to Global Warming or greenhouse effects. Since their sources are natural the cost of operations is reduced and they also require less maintenance on their plants. A common disadvantage to all is that it is difficult to produce the large quantities of electricity their counterpart the fossil fuels are able to. Since they are also new technologies, the cost of initiating them is high.

Solar energy makes use of the sun’s energy. It is advantageous because the systems can fit into existing buildings and it does not affect land use. But since the area of the collectors is large, more materials are required. Solar radiation is also controlled by geography. And it is limited to daytime hours and non-cloudy days.

Wind energy uses the power of the wind to produce electricity. Although it is the largest job producer, it is reliant on strong winds. Wind turbines are large and, although you can use the area under them for farming, many consider them unattractive looking. They are also very noisy to operate. In addition, they threaten the wild bird population.

Hydroelectric energy uses water to produce power. This is the most reliable of all the renewable energy sources. On the down side, it affects ecology and causes downstream problems. The decay of vegetation along the riverbed can cause the buildup of methane. Methane is a contributing gas to greenhouse effect. Dams can also alter the natural river flow and affect wildlife. Colder, oxygen poor water can be released into the river, killing fish. And the release of water from the dam can cause flooding.

Geothermal energy uses steam from the Earth’s ground to generate power. It uses smaller land areas than other power plants. They can run 24 hours per day, every day of the year. Disadvantages are that it is very site specific and, along with the heat from the Earth, it can also bring up toxic chemicals when obtaining the steam. Drilling geothermal reservoirs and finding them can be an expensive task.

Biomass electricity is produced through the energies from wood, agricultural and municipal waste. It helps save on landfill waste but transportation can be expensive and ecological diversity of land may be affected. In addition, its process needs to be made simpler.

Ocean energy is a clean and abundant energy form. It does, however, have high costs. Ocean thermal energy also requires close to a forty degree Fahrenheit difference in water temperature year round. In addition, construction and laying pipes can cause damage to the ecosystem.

There are many advantages to the use of renewable energy sources. There are also some disadvantages. The fact is energy demands will continue to increase. Through research and development, as well as, new technologies, the hope is many of the disadvantages of renewable sources of energy can be eliminated and we can successfully incorporate it into our power supplies.

Matthew Hick

Business Focus: Renewable Energey

Posted by admin on September 23, 2012 in Renewable Energy with 7 Comments

Business Focus: Renewable Energey

Duration : 0:22:14

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Global Warming Teaser – Pitbull

Posted by admin on September 23, 2012 in Global Warming with 25 Comments

EXCLUSIVE: New Pitbull album drops November 19th!!

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pitbull
Twitter: https://twitter.com/pitbull

Duration : 0:0:44

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