Category Archives: The Green Blog Network

Sustainable Building Apprenticeship Program For Women


10-Week Women’s Earthbag Dome Building Apprenticeship in Canada 

Lillooet, British Columbia, July 28-October 6, 2012

Kleiwerks International’s Women of the Americas Sustainability Initiative (WASI) is hosting a 10-week, hands-on natural building apprenticeship that brings together a group of women apprentices with an experienced team of earthbag builders and native St’at’imc community members. Their project is to construct a Healing & Cultural Arts Centre near Lillooet, BC. This training immersion provides participants with the opportunity to learn construction while building a dome from start to finish, develop leadership skills through facilitating local groups, work side-by-side with a community that is creating culturally appropriate local solutions, and document the story to share with wider audiences.

Ideal participants are women who have follow-up projects, intend to share what they learn, want to work in the natural building trades and be part of the growing natural building movement. “This apprenticeship is a unique opportunity for participants to delve into earthbag construction while building the envisioned creative cultural community commons with the people of T’it’qet and Lillooet who are engaged in proactively creating a vibrant future by combining traditional St’at’imc culture and values with refined sustainable and ecological solutions,” says Susannah Tedesco, local Program Coordinator.

Today’s building industry uses half of our planet’s resources, yet healthy, time-tested, affordable and soulful construction alternatives exist. These alternatives are based on reclaiming and refining the use of local and recycled materials. Coupled with indigenous knowledge and Permaculture design systems, natural building plays a profound role in creating a way of life that is good for people and the planet. 

Instructors Fox McBride and Chloe Wolsey are teaming up for the first time, combining their extensive and global earthbag dome construction backgrounds. WASI Delegate Christine Jack is a Nlaka’pamux First Nations leader who resides in St’atimc Territory near Lillooet, BC. Guest Instructors, The Mudgirls are a network of natural builders from BC. WASI Coordinator, Susannah Tedesco, is devoted to rural grassroots initiatives that empower communities to create viable local living solutions. 

Women of the Americas Sustainability Initiative (WASI) is an alliance of women leaders who construct, educate, organize, and advocate for strong and empowered communities through ecological design-build practices with the aim of creating a socially and ecologically resilient world.

For details or to apply visit: http://www.kleiwerks.org/wasi-canada-earthbagdome-apprenticeship-2012/. There are 12 seats available. The fee is $3,600, including tuition, meals, lodging and field trips.

Photos: http://www.flickr.com/apps/slideshow/show.swf?v=71649

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Environmental Investment Organisation

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Asked about the EIO and how it operates, 20 year old 

Katherine Belben, the NGO’sCommunications Coordinator, explained, “The EIO is the product of the current environmental and political climate. On the one hand we face impending environmental catastrophe which requires immediate action; and on the other we have world governments who appear incapable of reaching unified consensus to address the problem. The EIO has galvanised the support of a generation of people who, as well as wanting to glean knowledge and experience in an area set to become the growth engine of the 21st century, are simply not going to stand back and watch as that happens.”

“The required emissions reductions and investment in low carbon technologies can be achieved by creating a system which influences share price according to the environmental costs of a company’s actions. This is precisely what Environmental Tracking seeks to do,” added Sam Gill, Operations Director, Environmental Investment Organisation.

The Environmental Investment Organisation (EIO), a UK based NGO supported by a global research network, aims to persuade more companies to reduce Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions and report to higher standards with the launch of four new regional Carbon Rankings this week.

 

The series of Environmental Tracking (ET) Global Carbon Rankings, featuring over 1,200 of the world’s largest companies, is part of a broader strategy to create a global market mechanism designed to tackle climate change.

By pioneering an open source approach to collaborative working the EIO has made it easy for those eager to be part of the climate solution to contribute, hold the world’s biggest companies to account, and, implement a powerful mechanism.

Kicking off with the release of the ET North America 300 today at 11am (GMT+1) Monday 24.10.11, the EIO will be releasing a regional Ranking each day this week. The ET Asia Pacific 300ET BRICS 300 and an updated ET Europe 300 will follow on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Each of these Rankings has been designed to put the spotlight on standards of public GHG emissions reporting across the world.

 

The Regional Rankings act as a precursor to the eagerly awaited ET Global 800, which looks purely at the largest 800 companies across the world without any geographical bias. This will go live at 11am (GMT) on Tuesday 1.11.11.

 

With the introduction earlier this month of the long awaited New Scope 3 Standard from theGreenhouse Gas Protocol (released 4.10.11), the EIO has taken a proactive approach to incentivise companies to adopt this important new standard in GHG Reporting. The finalised standard has been the result of a three year global multi-stakeholders process that included more than 2,300 participants and road-tested by 60 companies in 17 countries.

  • The Environmental Investment Organisation (EIO) is a UK-based non-profit research body working in the field of eco-financial innovation. See eio.org.uk  
  • Environmental Tracking 3.0the short publication outlining the concept behind the Carbon Rankings is available as a digital download or in hardcopy from Lulu.com
  • The EIO held an advance briefing on the launch of its Regional and Global Carbon Rankings last Friday 21.10.11 at the Carbon Show, London.
  • Current live Indexes:

 

  • The Environmental Tracking (ET) Carbon Rankings are compiled from publicly available emissions data taken from company sustainability reports, annual reports and websites. The Rankings and the fully transparent methodology behind them can be viewed online at eio.org.uk
  • The rankings are comprised of four data bands according to the status of a company’s data: A) complete, public, verified; B) complete, public but unverified; C) incomplete; and, D) no public data. In cases where there is no data available, companies are benchmarked against the worst performer in the same sector. Once in their respective categories, companies are ranked according to emissions intensity (emissions divided by turnover). Additionally, companies are advantaged according to the number of Scope 3 categories disclosed.

 

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Mayor Bloomberg Announces 70 New Electric Vehicles

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Press Release, July 12, 2011               www.nyc.gov

 

MAYOR BLOOMBERG ANNOUNCES ADDITION OF 70 NEW ELECTRIC VEHICLES TO CITY’S FLEET AND LAUNCHES NEW CITY EFFORTS TO INFORM THE PUBLIC ABOUT ELECTRIC VEHICLES

 

  • New City Website Provides Facts About Electric Vehicles – 21 Percent of Consumers are More Likely to Purchase an Electric Vehicle after Being Provided Basic Facts
  • Electric Vehicles Will Help Achieve Air Quality and Greenhouse Gas Emission Goals in PlaNYC
  • City Hosting Free Screening of “Revenge of the Electric Car” and Information Session to Answer Questions About Electric Vehicles Tonight in Central Park

“This is the latest and largest-ever addition of electric vehicles to the City’s fleet, which is already the largest municipal clean-air vehicle fleet in the nation,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “We will continue to lead by example, but we also must provide New Yorkers with tools to make environmentally friendly choices in their own lives. When provided with the facts, people become far more likely to choose an electric vehicle. Our job is to ensure the public has the facts, ensure they can make their own decisions and ensure that if they want to drive an electric vehicle, we are providing the infrastructure needed. It’s all part of our PlaNYC agenda to create a greener, greater New York City.”

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Deputy Mayor for Operations Stephen Goldsmith, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability David Bragdon and Department of Citywide Administrative Services Commissioner Edna Wells Handy today announced the addition of 70 new electric vehicles to the City’s fleet and launched new City efforts to provide New Yorkers with the facts about electric vehicles. Research has shown most consumers are unaware of basic facts about electric vehicles, and the likelihood of a consumer purchasing an electric vehicle rather than an internal combustion vehicle increases dramatically once they are provided with the facts about electric vehicles. The City already has the largest municipal electric vehicle fleet in the country, now totaling 430 electric vehicles with the infusion of the 70 new electric vehicles announced today. Tonight, the City will host a free electric car information session and documentary screening in Central Park, and the City’s electric vehicle information website is now live on www.nyc.gov. The Mayor made the announcement at the Department of Sanitation’s Central Repair Shop in Maspeth, Queens where he was joined by Department of Sanitation Commissioner John J. Doherty; representatives from the New York Power Authority; the Environmental Defense Fund; the Sierra Club; Azure Dynamics, a partner of Ford Motor Company; General Motors; Navistar International Corporation; and Coulomb Technologies Inc., the manufacturers of the public electric vehicle charging stations available in the city.

 

 

“This largest-ever increase in the City’s electric-powered vehicle fleet is not only good for the environment, it’s good for City taxpayers too,” said Deputy Mayor Goldsmith. “Using electric vehicles reduces air pollution and carbon emissions while also lowering gasoline consumption – a fact that will translate into significant life-cycle savings per vehicle for the City. Today’s announcement illustrates New York City’s ongoing commitment to staying at the forefront of U.S. cities in our use of electric vehicles, and marks another milestone in achieving the sustainability goals set out in PlaNYC.”

 

“While we are doing our part to make City agency fleets greener, we’re also working to help  New Yorkers to have more sustainable choices in their lives as well,” said David Bragdon, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability. “Our goal is to arm the public with information and provide the resources that will allow New Yorkers to reduce their environmental impacts and long-term energy bills.”

 

“I’m very proud that DCAS enabled acquisition of these 70 vehicles by coordinating grant funding from the U.S. Department of Energy and the New York Power Authority,” said Commissioner Handy. “While New York City is already a leader in this area, boasting the largest clean-fuel municipal fleet in the country – emissions from these 70 electric vehicles are 75 percent cleaner than internal combustion engine vehicles. In addition to obtaining the funding for this initiative, DCAS teams shepherded the contracting, procurement and placement of the Volts, electric Transit Connects, and eStart vehicles in recipient agencies.”

 

“The New York Power Authority is proud to partner with Mayor Bloomberg and our New York City governmental customers to advance their efforts to address environmental health concerns and lower greenhouse gas emissions through the purchase of electric vehicles for their fleets,” said Richard M. Kessel, president and chief executive officer, New York Power Authority. “We are committed to helping New York City achieve its sustainability goals under its PlaNYC initiative and will continue to study the overall benefits that these electric vehicles provide to the agencies and to the overall community.”

 

“A year ago we announced with the City of New York the installation of the first public charging station to support electric vehicles as part of the ChargePoint America Department of Energy grant program,” said Colleen Quinn, Vice President of Government Relations at Coulomb.   “We are pleased to see this commitment to the government fleet effort as well.  Coulomb is proud to continue our relationship with the City of New York and continue to lay the groundwork for this important era of clean transportation. We applaud the City for implementing their green fleet of EVs, which will reduce our dependency on foreign oil but reduce carbon emissions as well.”

 

The City’s electric vehicle program is made possible due to a partnership with the New York State Power Authority and funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation – each helped fund a portion of the cost differential between the purchase of an electric vehicle and gas-powered vehicle – and the U.S. Department of Energy, which provided a grant to the charger manufacturer Coulomb to provide the public charging stations installed throughout the city.

 

            A survey by McKinsey & Company for the City showed a lack of consumer information and lack of educational resources on electric vehicles. Only 30 percent of New Yorkers are knowledgeable about the specific benefits and limitations of electric vehicles. Providing basic information on electric vehicles dramatically increases interest in the vehicles – the study showed 21 percent of consumers were more likely to purchase an electric vehicle after being educated about the facts on the vehicles.

 

            The City’s electric vehicle information site, Drive Electric NYC, available at www.nyc.gov, provides users with the primary facts about electric cars: how they drive, how they are unique and how they are similar to and differ from conventional vehicles. The site also includes a map of public charging stations in the city, a cost calculator link to help potential owners understand the total cost of an electric vehicle versus a conventional vehicle – including fuel costs – and describes how electric cars work in everyday use. The site also documents the environmental benefits of electric cars. The site is part of the recently updated PlaNYC, which includes an initiative to facilitate the adoption of electric vehicles. The City is also collaborating with the cities of Boston and Philadelphia as part of the Northeast Regional Electric Vehicle Partnership to improve conditions for electric vehicles and alleviate barriers to early electric vehicle adoption through low-cost, high-impact actions.

 

The Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability and Nissan will host a free electric vehicle information session tonight from 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM in Central Park’s Naumburg Bandshell, where the public can examine electric vehicles like the Chevrolet Volt, Ford Transit Connect, Navistar eStar, Nissan LEAF, and original electric Toyota RAV4. Experts from the Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability, the Sierra Club, Nissan and Con Edison will be on-hand to answer questions about electric vehicles.

 

The information session will be followed by a free screening of the new documentary “Revenge of the Electric Car” at 8:30 PM, also at Central Park’s Naumburg Bandshell. The critically acclaimed film premiered at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival and it tells the story of the development of a new breed of electric cars during the global economic crisis. The film is the sequel to the 2006 documentary “Who Killed the Electric Car.”

 

The City’s new batch of electric vehicles includes: 50 new “extended range” hybrid Chevrolet Volts, 10 fully electric Ford Transit Connect cargo vans, and 10 new fully electric Navi-star “E-star” utility trucks.

 

The City agencies utilizing the 70 new electric vehicles are: the Department of Citywide Administrative Services, the Department of Correction, the Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Parks and Recreation, Department of Sanitation, Department of Transportation, New York City Fire Department, the New York City Police Department, and Taxi and Limousine Commission. The FDNY and NYPD initially will use the vehicles for non-emergency duties, including use by NYPD Traffic Enforcement Agents

 

            The Chevrolet Volt is the first electric car being used by the NYPD. The NYPD already uses electric scooters and electric powered golf carts on boardwalks, in parks and some transit hubs.

 

The Administration is already working towards the use electric vehicles in the City’s fleet of more than 13,000 yellow taxis. As part of its selection as the supplier of New York City’s Taxi of Tomorrow, Nissan is working with the City and taxi owners on a pilot program to study the use of zero-emission electric vehicles as taxis. Nissan will provide six 100 percent electric Nissan LEAFs to taxi owners for testing in 2012 as well as the charging stations to support their use. The City’s Taxi of Tomorrow – the Nissan NV200 – can be manufactured as an all electric taxi, if the pilot program proves successful.

 

Facts on Electric Vehicles

 

·         Based on our current power generation, electric vehicle use is responsible for emitting approximately ¼ the CO2 associated with the use of the average car in New York City.

·         Transportation contributes 20 percent of the city’s CO2 emissions and is the biggest single source after buildings. 

·         Electric vehicles do not have any tailpipe emissions such as NOx or particulates (both of which contribute to respiratory illness) and emit practically no engine heat reducing the sweltering heat on busy corridors.

·         Electricity prices have risen more slowly and are traditionally more stable than oil prices, so consumers with electric vehicles are less impacted by power price fluctuations. 

·         The range of an electric vehicle far exceeds the average American’s daily miles traveled and they have an emergency mode to warn the driver of low power, providing enough power to get off the road.

·         By the most optimistic estimates, electric vehicles will represent 0.6 percent of total energy consumption by 2015. If 70 percent of all electric vehicles plugged in at the same time during the peak period, it would increase demand by less than two percent.

 

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Produced By Conference – 2,200 Attendees And Over 300 Film Commissions

 

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  • Producer, Lauren Shuler Donner and PGA President Emeritus and PBC Co-Chair, Marshall Herskovitz at the Opening Night Kick-Off Party Photo Credit: Jordan Strauss
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  • Signage from the third annual Produced By Conference Photo Credit: Jordan Strauss

For the first time, the 2011 PBC brought acclaimed producers and industry veterans along with hundreds of film commissions together to interact with an astonishing number of participants—more than double the number of attendees from last year’s PBC. With speakers like Harvey Weinstein, Lawrence Gordon, Kevin Smith, Mark Gordon, Darren Star, Robert Greenblatt, Tim Gibbons and many more, over 100 masters of their craft shared their expertise as attendees were endlessly inspired throughout the two-day celebration. In addition to riveting panel sessions and conversations, attendees were delighted with the unique exposure and interaction with film commission exhibitions from around the globe spread throughout the Disney lot.

Pbc_17

 

  • Moderator Richard Gladstein with featured PBC speakersAlbert Berger, Todd Black, Donald De Line, Steve Golin and Cathy Schulman discuss the “Evolving Role of the Creative Producer” Photo Credit: Jordan Strauss

Reaching across film, television and new media industries, the annual Produced By Conference is an educational forum that involves acclaimed producers, including countless Academy Award®-winning filmmakers and Emmy Award® winners, as well as the next generation of creative entrepreneurs. The AFCI Locations Show is an annual gathering of film commissions from around the globe representing over $2 billion in financing and incentives. The PBC event was chaired by Marshall Herskovitz, Gale Anne Hurd and Rachel Klein. Further information on this year’s event can be found at www.producedbyconference.com.

Check Back soon on Greening Hollywood and Green Blog Network for our Green Event Coverage of the PBC 2011.


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Mark Ruffalo and Orlando Bloom For Global Green USA, June 4, 2011 Santa Monica

Greening Hollywood TV Mark Ruffalo For GGUSA June 2011

 


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>Only 150 Hawaiian False Killer Whales Remain in the Wild

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>COOL IT opens LA on 11/12/10

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Cool It blasts through the polarizing logjam of the climate change debate to bring a solid plan for solutions” – director Ondi Timoner

 

Roadside Attractions presents

“COOL IT”

In theaters nationwide on Nov. 12, 2010

 

Feature documentary plays in Los Angeles

at the Laemmle Monica 4-Plex & in Orange County

*additional theaters TBA

 

Climate catastrophe? The end of civilization as we know it?   COOL IT is based upon the book of the same name and lectures by Bjorn Lomborg, the controversial author of The Skeptical Environmentalist.  Award-winning filmmaker Ondi Timoner travels the world with Lomborg exploring the real facts and true science of global warming and its impact.  Lomborg is the founder and director of the Copenhagen Consensus Center, a globally respected think tank that brings together the world’s leading economists to prioritize major global problems — among them malaria, the lack of potable water and HIV/AIDS — based upon a cost/benefit analysis of available solutions. Amidst the strong and polarized opinions within the global warming debate, COOL IT follows Lomborg on his mission to bring the smartest solutions to climate change, environmental pollution, and other major problems in the world.

 

Roadside Attractions will release COOL IT nationwide on November 12, 2010. The feature documentary will play in Los Angeles at the Laemmle Monica 4-Plex and in Orange County. Additional theaters TBA.  COOL IT is a 1019 Entertainment Production in association with Interloper Films. An Ondi Timoner Film.

 

Rating: PG for thematic elements. Running Time: 87 minutes


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>World Whale And Dolphin Day – Celebrating Our Ocean Friends

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>My Greatest Hope…

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>Green Innovation Institute Rocks The Cradle2Cradle Crowd

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>Greening Los Angeles: Ports Of LA Demonstrate Vision

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Sustainability Award Given by Senator Fran Pavley to Vision Motorcorp.

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>Avatar Director James Cameron Talks Greening Hollywood On Global Green USA’s 2010 Pre-Oscar Bash Green Carpet

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Celebrities came out in force to discuss Greener Cities For A Cooler Planet at this year’s Global Green Pre-Oscar Bash. Greening Hollywood was there to capture the moments and document Avatar Director James Cameron’swords about the importance of making films with an environmental theme and also Leonardo DiCaprio’s, Jessica Alba’s and others’ support of Global Green USA, Greening Hollywood and Greening The Globe. Stay tuned for the Academy Awards on Sunday March 7th, 2010. Suzy Amis Cameron will wear her Eco-chic gown on the Oscar Red Carpet.

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>Johnny Weir Says Vancouver Green And Clean

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Vancouver is a great host city for the Olympics, said Johnny Weir at a press conference this afternoon. “Vancouver is so green and clean. Everyone is in love with this city and the fact that the games are here.”

The Olympic contender for Men’s Figure Skating called the press conference in response to the media frenzy fomenting around the derogatory comments a couple of on-air reporters made about Johnny regarding his sexual orientation while he was in the middle of his competitions.

“I grew my beard out today to show that I am a man, at the end of the day,” said the 25 year old USA competitor. He told the assembled press that he’s still in Vancouver preparing for the World Championships and training with his coaches who are all still up in Vancouver, B.C.

“I look forward to performing all around the world this year. I hope I can skate to Lady Gaga very soon,” said Weir, referring to the song, “Poker Face.”

Weir opened the press conference by thanking his fans for their outpouring of love and support. He also said that when he heard the derogatory comments made by the two reporters, he felt “pissed off” and defiant. He admitted to feeling that way because the criticisms were directed at him personally and not at him as an athlete and Olympic contender.

He said he chose to speak out about this issue not because he wants an apology, he believes, he said, in freedom of speech and that people have the right to voice their opinions, but he said that he felt it was important to set a strong example for the boys and girls who will follow.

“No one should be made to feel like a freak or a weirdo,” he said.  “I just hope that more boys and girls have parents like me who allow their children to be an individual.  It’s definitely the time for freedom. Time to be unique and to believe in themselves,” he said expressing that this is the message he feels is most important to impart to the younger generations.

As for his thoughts on the quad?  He said that he is “so excited that Evan won [Olympic Gold Medal] without doing a quad.”  Weir conceded that the judging in figure skating has always been suspect. “And when you’re on the receiving end of it, it can be not nice, to lose to people who fall down, who make glaring mistakes, he said.

At attending member of the press from Canada’s Quebec Province asked Johnny Weir if he was aware of the tremendous outpouring of support for him that has come from that province, where two radio announcers originally made the offensive comments. Weir said that a good friend of his from Montreal has already told him as such.

“Out of ugly, the most important thing in life is to make something beautiful,” said Weir. “The only thing I ever wanted from this figure skating craziness was to perform, to perform my art.”

He said he has plans to pursue a career in fashion design at some point.

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>Public Swimming Pools Get 30% Solar Tax Credit

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by Susan Kraemer
[ Originally published on Clean Technica ]
When the 30% tax credits as cash grants were instituted with the American Recovery Act, I was doing solar estimates for a small solar start-up in California. I was surprised to find that the 30% solar tax credit (available as a  cash grant for businesses) was available for solar thermal – only when it was not used for heating swimming pools. Heating water for showers, dishes, radiant heating system in buildings with solar thermal was eligible, but swimming pools were excluded.

Yet I found that heating the swimming pool was the greatest need that the apartment owners I was contacting had, and it was such a staggering source of greenhouse gas emissions, that I wrote up my suggestion that “like heating apartment pools” should be instated as the measure we use when we say doing something is like taking some number of “cars-off-the-road” to  “measure” carbon reduction.

For example, the Maintenance Supervisor at The Bay Street Apartments in the East Bay told me that every month, $6,000 of his $11,000 a month gas bill went just to keeping this relatively tiny swimming pool at the sort of modest temperature that apartment pools are kept at. Hot water for all the apartments in the complex took less gas than this tiny swimming pool.

My estimate for an Apricus system for Santana Row came in at $227,790, and $1, 256,373 money saved over 25 years (not spent on gas, which if its average annual cost rise -of 9% a year till this year- were to continue over the next 25 years would have been an estimated $2,473,605.)
The greenhouse gases saved over the twenty five years came to 90,000 tons of carbon.
Although the apartment complex was eligible for a utility rebate in my utility district (PG&E) based on the (in this case) 13,045 therms saved in the first year, they were not eligible for any other incentives, (although Southern California was looking into expanding solar thermal incentives at that time).
This is the kind of money and greenhouse gas emissions that apartment complexes are literally pouring into pools, for heating that evaporates into the cool night air every night. It is probably one of the biggest energy waster we have. I am sure that it is costing community swimming pools a similar amount.
Commercial pools at hotels and motels, health clubs, municipal pools and school pools would all be covered. Approximately 189,000 commercial pools nationwide use fossil fuel or electricity to heat an estimated 27.25 billion gallons of water nationwide.  If the heating systems were replaced with solar water heating systems, 1.23 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions avoided annually.
Senator Feinstein’s measure [with Sen. Merkley D-Ore.] would extend the 30% solar tax credit which is set to expire in 2010, and expand it to include solar thermal for commercial and community swimming pools, and also would expand it to include manufacturing equipment needed to manufacture solar water heating systems.

Currently, no US manufacturer of solar water heating is a major player. China dominates the solar hot water heater sector, with Kyoto Accord nations coming right up behind China, (and the already climate-changed Australia where the Apricus is made), having already beaten the US to solar hot water industry dominance.
If this bill were included in the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act climate bill in the Senate (CEJAPA), it really would do a tremendous amount for clean energy jobs and American power, starting to develop a solar hot water manufacturing industry in this country.

Summary of the solar thermal legislation


  • Expands the solar investment tax credit to include manufacturing equipment and solar water heaters for commercial and community pools. The bill would allow equipment that makes solar panels to qualify for the 30 percent solar investment tax credit.  Promoting solar manufacturing in this country could lead to thousands of new jobs, such as those being created at Solyndra’s new factory in Fremont, CA.
    • Commercial pools are common at hotels/motels, health clubs, and schools.  Approximately 189,000 commercial pools nationwide use fossil fuel or electricity to heat an estimated 27.25 billion gallons of water.  If the heating systems were replaced with solar water heating systems, there would be 1.23 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions avoided annually, which is equivalent to taking 237,000 cars off the road.  California has 26 percent of all commercial pools in the U.S. and could significantly reduce pollution by widely adopting solar hot water heating.Extend the Treasury Grants Program until 2012: The program allows renewable energy developers to take grants, or payments, from the Treasury department instead of claiming tax credits in order to help build projects that require a great deal of capital upfront. The program is set to expire in 2010, but experts believe this deadline is well before most large-scale renewable energy projects would be ready to begin construction or tax equity markets would be primed to rebound. The Feinstein measure would extend the program until 2012.


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    >Greening Copenhagen: A Climactic Fairytale

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    by Paige Donner

    When Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger addressed the leaders attending the Global Climate Conference in Copenhagen earlier this week, he noted Copenhagen’s Little Mermaid, its famous statue in the city center that is drawn from a Hans Christian Andersen fairytale. He also noted that his favorite fairytale as a child was “The Ugly Duckling” because of its theme of transformation.

    The California Governor is lobbying hard to maintain our focus on the fact that “this conference is automatically and already a success.”

    In these final hours of the historical summit, much focus is being placed on a global agreement being signed by all the world’s leaders, the developing nations and the developed nations; And in particular whether China and the U.S. can come to an agreement about emissions reduction inspections and national sovereignty. Much focus is also being placed on which leaders B.O. is including in his pack and which ones he is snubbing.

    Schwarzenegger’s emphasis continues to focus our attention on the integral role that subnational governments and leaders – and individuals and entrepreneurs – play in this transformation of our environmental practices and some of the industries upon which we base our global economy.

    Governor Schwarzenegger:

    “…the world’s governments alone cannot make progress, the kind of progress that is needed on global climate change. They alone cannot do it. They need everyone coming together, everyone working together. They need the cities, they need the states, they need the provinces and the regions. They need the corporations, the activists, the scientists and the universities. They need the individuals whose vision and determination create movements. They need everybody out there.

    So ladies and gentlemen, let us regain our momentum, let us regain our purpose, let us regain our hope by liberating the transformative power beneath the national level.


    That can be the great contribution of Copenhagen — that could be the great contribution of Copenhagen.

    Some examples he gave of industry and entrepreneurs leading the way: A German company in Texas building and operating the world’s largest wind farm; a renewable energy company in China stating that they feel that renewables are “good business, not a burden.” Solazyme, the firm that derives its renewable energy from algae and its recent U.S. Department of Defense contract is more evidence of successful private-public partnerships.

    He also spoke about his late Mother-in-law’s pioneering efforts to create the Special Olympics. This was an effort of individuals and people. This was not an effort set forth by governments.  He pointed out that it is people, friends and family, who are there at the finishing line to give the athletes participating in the Special Olympics a big hug, not governments.  The Special Olympics is now in 180-plus countries.

    Without the dedication of individuals, activists, entrepreneurs, there would be no environmental movement.   “Movements began with the people, not with governments,” concluded Schwarzenegger.

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    Filed under Copenhagen Climate Summit, Governor Schwarzenegger, Greening Copeenhagen, Premier Campbell, The Green Blog Network