Day: July 23, 2013

Saving Energy and Water through State Programs for Clothes Washer Replacement in the Great Lakes Region

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The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) are collaborating to identify opportunities for energy and water savings in the clothes washer sector as part of the development of an innovative program for the Great Lakes region. This paper presents a characterization of existing clothes washer markets, both commercial and residential, as well as the technical and economic potential for water and energy savings in various clothes washer markets in the Great Lakes states. This research will inform efforts to develop a statewide program for implementation in the Great Lakes states to save energy and water through clothes washer replacement.

While the residential clothes washer market has seen significant success in a transition to high performance ENERGY STAR machines, there are still opportunities for energy savings through replacement with the highest efficiency units ranked by programs such as TopTen USA and ENERGY STAR Most Efficient. Additionally, the commercial clothes washer market has significant potential for energy and water savings. The commercial clothes washer market is significantly more diverse and varied than the residential market with respect to machine type, size, and usage patterns. As a result, upgrades to commercial clothes washers in multifamily, laundromat, and on-premise laundry settings have the potential to yield significant energy and water savings.

Off-grid sterilization

Read the full story in R&D Magazine.

Rice Univ. nanotechnology researchers have unveiled a solar-powered sterilization system that could be a boon for more than 2.5 billion people who lack adequate sanitation. The “solar steam” sterilization system uses nanomaterials to convert as much as 80% of the energy in sunlight into germ-killing heat.

The technology is described online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition. In the paper, researchers from Rice’s Laboratory for Nanophotonics (LANP) show two ways that solar steam can be used for sterilization—one setup to clean medical instruments and another to sanitize human waste.

Team creates first above-ground carbon density map for whole country

Read the full story in R&D Magazine.

Researchers have for the first time mapped the above ground carbon density of an entire country in high fidelity. They integrated field data with satellite imagery and high-resolution airborne light detection and ranging (LiDAR) data to map the vegetation and to quantify carbon stocks throughout the Republic of Panama. The results are the first maps that report carbon stocks locally in areas as small as a hectare (2.5 acres) and yet cover millions of hectares in a short time. The system has the lowest demonstrated uncertainty of any carbon-counting approach yet—a carbon estimation uncertainty of about 10% in each hectare overflown with LiDAR as compared to field-based estimates. Importantly, it can be used across a wide range of vegetation types worldwide.

BGSU grants support ‘green’ bike shelters, recycling

Read the full story from Bowling Green State University.

From green-roofed bike shelters to more convenient recycling, Bowling Green State University is continuing its progress toward campus sustainability. Beginning later this year, the campus will be able to park bikes under a canopy of succulents and toss recyclables into a nearby bin, with support from two new grants.

From green-roofed bike shelters to more convenient recycling, Bowling Green State University is continuing its progress toward campus sustainability. Beginning later this year, the campus will be able to park bikes under a canopy of succulents and toss recyclables into a nearby bin, with support from two new grants. – See more at: http://www.noodls.com/view/6BB35036B58548B01EBCC2DB5A69F114A56BE38B#sthash.j93Vgbix.dpuf
From green-roofed bike shelters to more convenient recycling, Bowling Green State University is continuing its progress toward campus sustainability. Beginning later this year, the campus will be able to park bikes under a canopy of succulents and toss recyclables into a nearby bin, with support from two new grants. – See more at: http://www.noodls.com/view/6BB35036B58548B01EBCC2DB5A69F114A56BE38B#sthash.j93Vgbix.dpuf

URI awarded $1 million grant to lead national climate change education initiative

Read the full story from the University of Rhode Island.

The University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School of Oceanography (GSO) has been awarded a $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation to serve as the national hub for the Climate Change Education Partnership Alliance. The grant will enable the University to build a network of climate change scientists, educators, communication professionals, and government and private-sector stakeholders to educate the public about the science of climate change and its implications.