Green parking lots and porous pavements

Have you ever wondered what happens to the ground underneath parking lots and streets?  Traditional pavement is impervious to rain water, instead the rain water runs off into the sewer systems where it is efficiently channeled into the nearest stream or river.  If the pavement wasn’t there the rain water…

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Gov. Palin and certain fallacies about energy independence

Alaska Governor Palin has announced her resignation in a surprise move which leaves many questions. During the announcement statement she stated an objective to continue pursuing her objectives which includes “Energy Independence”. The phrase obviously hearkens back to certain slogans of last years Presidential election race and since she didn’t…

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Silicon Valley’s role in the electric vehicle revolution

A recent Scientific American article, San Jose’s Electric Car Revolution, was disappointing because it only covered the work of Coulomb Technologies. While they’re doing wonderful things, Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay area has so much more electric vehicle activity happening than just Coulomb Technologies and Tesla Motors (the…

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Environmental benefits (or not) of the Cash for Clunkers program

Ideally a program like the Car Allowance Rebate System (CARS) really would cause a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, improve energy security, reduce oil dependence costs, and increase energy sustainability.  The program’s key is to incentivize replacement of inefficient cars with more efficient transportation choices.  An earlier article (The Cash…

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The Cash for Clunkers program

Got a clunker of a car you want to replace with a new one?  There is a new law meant to address greenhouse emissions and energy security.  The program incentivizes Americans to buy new fuel efficient vehicles to replace inefficient ones.  Increasing the average fleet fuel economy in the U.S.A.…

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Clean trucks for clean ports and harbors

It’s well known that burning diesel fuel emits many harmful byproducts with global warming and negative health effects.  CARB studies show that diesel particulate matter contributes to premature death, lung cancer, decreased lung function in children, chronic bronchitis, respiratory and cardiovascular problems, asthma, respiratory symptoms, and is a potent global…

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Green transportation choice process

Caltrain is the rail service running between San Jose and San Francisco Tonight I am on my way to San Francisco for a meeting. Always when taking a trip I spend awhile analyzing ahead of time what’s the greenest way to get there. Can I avoid burning oil? Can I…

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Ford’s gonna sell their Ranger EV’s

Back a few years ago when California was mandating zero-emission-vehicles with a hard deadline, the automakers came forth with a few models. As a rule the automakers did a piss-poor job of marketing them, but even so there was huge demand for the cars (long waiting lists, etc) but the…

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A Dirty Little Footnote to the Energy Bill

A Dirty Little Footnote to the Energy Bill ( By ALEXEI BARRIONUEVO, Published: April 15, 2005, NYTIMES.COM) This article concerns itself with a gasoline additive, methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE). The additive is the subject of a lot of support in Congress, partly because it is made from methanol, derived…

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Geeks with solar power

Here’s what happens when a couple geeks install a large solar panel array. They set up a web site to describe the details, including graphs of power utilization. http://www.solarwarrior.com/ My only question is – why do two people need a 36 kw array? The answer probably has to do with…

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