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Monday, June 18, 2018

Suspected bee-killing pesticide found in honey samples

Suspected bee-killing pesticide found in honey samples

WASHINGTON — When researchers collected honey samples from around the world, they found that three-quarters of them had a common type of pesticide suspected of playing a role in the decline of bees. Even honey from the island paradise of Tahiti had the chemical.

That demonstrates how pervasive a problem the much-debated pesticide is for honeybees, said authors of a study published Thursday in the journal Science. They said it is not a health problem for people because levels were far below governments’ thresholds on what’s safe to eat.

“What this shows is the magnitude of the contamination,” said study lead author Edward Mitchell, a biology professor at the University of Neuchatel in Switzerland, adding that there are “relatively few places where we did not find any.”

Over the past few years, several studies — in the lab and the field — link insecticides called neonicotinoids, or neonics, to reduced and weakened honeybee hives, although pesticide makers dispute those studies. Neonics work by attacking an insect’s central nervous system.

Bees and other pollinators have been on the decline for more than a decade and experts blame a combination of factors: neonics, parasites, disease, climate change and lack of a diverse food supply. Honeybees don’t just make honey; about one-third of the human diet comes from plants that are pollinated by the insects. Bees pick up the pesticide when they feed on fields grown from treated seeds.

As part of a citizen science project, the Swiss researchers asked other experts, friends and relatives to ship them honey samples. More than 300 samples arrived and researchers tested 198 of them for five of the most common types of neonics.
Overall, 75 percent of the samples had at least one neonic, 45 percent had two or more and 10 percent had four or more.
Results varied by region. In North America, 86 percent of samples had the pesticide; Asia, 80 percent; Europe, where there’s a partial ban, 79 percent; Africa, 73 percent; the Australian region, 71 percent; and South America, 57 percent.

The study found that nearly half of the honey samples exceeded a level of the pesticide that some previous research said weakens bees, but the pesticide makers say otherwise. An outside expert, University of Nebraska’s Judy Wu-Smart, said the study used too few honey samples to make the broad conclusions the researchers did.

Ann Bryan, spokeswoman for Syngenta, which makes the neonic thiamethoxam, said the amount of the pesticide found in honey samples “are 50 times lower than what could cause possible effects on bees.”

Jeffrey Donald, a spokesman for Bayer Crop Science, which makes the neonic clothianidinsaid, said the study “perpetuates the myth that exposure to low levels of neonicotinoids implies risk, even though there is no compelling scientific evidence to support this conclusion.”

The study authors likened neonics to DDT, the pesticide in the 1960s linked to declines in bald eagles and other birds. They said neonics are dangerous to all sorts of insects, even ladybugs. University of Illinois bee expert Sydney Cameron and other scientists said those comparisons aren’t right because neonics don’t stay in an animal’s system like DDT did and are applied to seeds and not sprayed in mass quantities.

“This is an important paper if for no other reason that it will attract a great deal of attention to the mounting problem of worldwide dependence on agrochemicals, the side effects of which we know relatively little,” Cameron said in an email. She wasn’t part of the study.
One side benefit of collecting honey is that researchers could sample some. Mitchell’s favorite is a dark and bitter honey from Africa. He called the honey fantastic, but added, “I couldn’t eat it all the time. It was just too strong.”

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Power Companies’ Mistakes Can Cost Billions. Who Should Pay?/NY Times

More reasons why we should continue to invest heavily in transforming how we make and deliver power.

Utilities say they must be shielded from liability or the electric grid will suffer. Critics say that puts the burden on ratepayers, not investors.

FALLBROOK, Calif. — After flames rolled over the hills north of San Diego and engulfed vineyards, avocado groves and neighborhoods, hundreds in this area were left with only the charred remains of homes and businesses. For many, that moment in 2007 was the beginning of a long struggle to rebuild — if they did at all — and recover their financial losses.
And they had a villain in mind: San Diego Gas and Electric, whose fallen power poles had been found partly responsible. “It wasn’t campers; it wasn’t somebody throwing a match,” said Al Ransom, a 79-year-old retired Marine who sued the utility over losses that reached into the millions. “It was the utility. That was established.”
Now the question is whether an investor-owned utility’s customers — not its shareholders — should pay for the harm in such cases. A bill before the California Legislature would give utilities the ability to pass on the costs from legal settlements to ratepayers, even if the utilities were responsible for the fire.
Al Ransom sued San Diego Gas and Electric after the utility’s fallen power poles were found partly to blame for a 2007 fire. He and his wife, Cathie, used their retirement savings to restore the business they ran on their property.CreditMatchull Summers for The New York Times

Last year alone, wildfires in the state killed dozens of people, destroyed thousands of homes and businesses and damaged tens of thousands of other properties — losses estimated at $12 billion in all. Neglected maintenance around power lines belonging to the state’s biggest utility, Pacific Gas and Electric, has been blamed for some of the fires.

But critics assert that power providers across the nation want ratepayers to bear the financial burden when things go wrong, whether the cause is a natural disaster, a utility’s negligence or even poor decision-making by executives — in essence, that like crucial financial firms, they are too big to fail.
“Every other business in America, if they make bad decisions, they go out of business,” said Steve Campora, a lawyer for some of the victims of California fires over the past 10 years. “For some reason, there’s this notion that the utilities ought to be propped up.”

New vegetation has emerged in a recently burned area in northern San Diego County, near the origin of a major fire in December.CreditMatchull Summers for The New York Times

In North Carolina, Duke Energy has been seeking regulatory approval for more than $400 million in additional payments from its customers, in part to clean up leaking coal-ash basins at its power plants across the state.
■ South Carolina Electric and Gas and related utilities canceled the V.C. Summer nuclear plant last year after they ran up $9 billion in expenses for which consumers continue to foot the bill.
■ Florida Power and Light, Duke Energy, Gulf Power and TECO Energy lost $6.5 billion over a 15-year period in hedging the price of natural gas, betting that it would rise. Prices fell, and Florida consumers paid for the misjudgment.
“They just kept doing it and kept losing,” said Charles Rehwinkel, deputy public counsel for the Florida Legislature. “There was a seismic change in the price of natural gas and they just kept losing money.”

Just as the California Legislature is considering for its utilities, Mr. Rehwinkel said Florida allowed power companies to recover their costs on the hedging as long as they developed a plan for the program, even if it was flawed and failed. And with the ability to charge customers, he said, the utilities just kept spending money.
“Once they start it, they can’t stop,” Mr. Rehwinkel said. “It’s more addictive than crack.”
Jamie Court, president of Consumer Watchdog, a nonprofit advocacy organization in Los Angeles, said the companies have consistently sought to use their customers to fund their ambitions and failures while rewarding investors — even after regulators have found the utility at fault. “They socialize the risk and privatize the profits,” he said...."


Thursday, June 14, 2018

Is There An Algorithm to End World Hunger?/Food Tank

Great post by our friends at Food Tank.   There's a link for more.

In today’s digital world, researchers and scientists collect massive amounts of data about global systems. These groundbreaking tools and statistical methods for collecting, organizing, and analyzing information, commonlyreferred to as Big Data, are transforming almost every aspect of daily life—from banking to public transportation to your social media profile. Big Data's ability to measure soil chemistry, germination rates, harvest indicators, and more has the potential to usher in a new era in innovative farming; transforming not only how we produce, but also how we consume food. 

In partnership with the CGIAR Platform for Big Data in Agriculture, Food Tank is introducing a new series titled "Agricultural Intelligence" that will explore the ways in which Big Data is transforming research on farms and food production.

Over the last 50 years, CGIAR (formerly the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research) led the global effort to harness research in support of food security in a dynamic, unpredictable world. The Platform is a major marker in the organization's mission to conserve nature, reduce poverty, and end hunger. This exciting partnership will dive into the most challenging issues facing the global food system today through exclusive interviews, profiles, and in-depth articles on the CGIAR Platform.

Read and share the first installment in the series, "Is There an Algorithm to End World Hunger?" by CLICKING HERE.

What topics related to Big Data and agriculture inspire you? Please email me to share them with us!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

How Batteries Will Change the Power Business/Barron's

For years we've been reporting on the strategic growth and important of energy storage systems.  Here's a deep dive and great insight on the changing landscape of power.
STERLING, MASS.—Until recently, this tidy, quiet town in central Massachusetts was best known to outsiders for its eight-acre corn maze out by Davis Farmland, and for a little statue near the corner of Main and Park immortalizing the lamb that is said to have followed young Mary Sawyer to school one day in 1812, inspiring a well-known poem. Lately, however, Sterling welcomes visitors from far away who don’t come for outdoor fun or nursery rhymes.
“As soon as it came on-line, they started rolling in—Japan, Switzerland, Sweden, Brazil, Colombia—13 different countries so far,” says Darren Borge, operations supervisor at the town’s light department. The visitors come to peek inside a single shipping container placed in late 2016 at the power substation on Chocksett Road. There, twin rows of what look like post office boxes pack lithium-ion batteries that together can hold two megawatts of power. That’s enough to make Sterling, population 8,000, the country’s per capita energy-storage leader—and a glimpse of the future of the electricity business.
How Batteries Will Change the Power Business
High-power batteries have already infiltrated the chain-saw aisle at Home Depot and are poised to disrupt the car industry in the decades ahead. Now, they are quickly multiplying across the U.S. power grid. In Sterling, those two megawatts are enough to provide savings and resiliency—to smooth out power demand and avoid peak charges, and in the event of an outage, run the nearby police department and fire dispatch for more than a week.
Last year, the nation installed half a gigawatt of energy storage—equal to 250 Sterlings. Over the next eight years, the country will add more than 35 gigawatts of storage, or 17,500 Sterlings, predicts the Energy Storage Association, a Washington, D.C., industry group. That’s enough to save $4 billion in yearly operating costs. Stephen Byrd, a utility analyst for Morgan Stanley, calls that storage forecast credible. He reckons the U.S. storage market will eventually be worth at least $20 billion, and $35 billion under more bullish assumptions.
That’s excellent news for many stakeholders. Consumers stand to save on power and see fewer disruptions. Towns can cut pollution and add jobs. Some utilities will enjoy lucrative growth opportunities by, for example, combining renewable power with storage, while others could be left behind, generating costly coal and nuclear power while prices fall around them. Right now, stock valuations across the utility sector aren’t especially differentiated, providing an opportunity for investors...."

Monday, June 11, 2018

CVS Health Releases 11th Annual Corporate Social Responsibility Report/RNN

Good follow up to an interview we did with their sustainability director.

CVS Health (NYSE: CVS)  released its 11th annual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Report, detailing its latest efforts to shape the future of health care, reduce environmental impacts and exemplify corporate leadership in fulfilling the company’s purpose of helping people on their path to better health.
 Among the company’s key CSR initiatives in 2017 were an enterprise response to combatting the opioid crisis, the development of a carbon emissions reduction target in line with climate science, and a rapid and robust response to a series of natural disasters that impacted CVS Health operations, colleagues and communities. The company also made new commitments to increase access to health care for veterans and military families, as well as to address the nation’s skills gap through its Registered Apprenticeship program. To further align enterprise goals and values with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, CVS Health became the first U.S. pharmacy chain to join the United Nations Global Compact, the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative.
“At CVS Health, we serve as the front door to health care – touching the lives of one in three Americans, with a presence in thousands of communities across the country. We are playing an active role in providing more affordable, accessible, and effective care, and our corporate social responsibility strategy supports these efforts,” said Larry Merlo, President and Chief Executive Officer for CVS Health. “Looking ahead, we will continue to align our CSR goals with CVS Health’s leading position at the heart of health care delivery in the United States.”
CVS Health’s CSR framework, Prescription for a Better World, spans efforts across three strategic pillars: Health in Action, Planet in Balance and Leader in Growth. Within each pillar, the company has established goals and measurable, time-bound targets to ensure accountability. The company also reports on progress made against each target in this year’s Report.
“In 2017, we established new leadership positions across a range of CSR issues. We were thoughtful and determined in how we generated impact by leveraging our size, scale and expertise,” said Eileen Howard Boone, Senior Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility and Philanthropy. “Collaboration with our many internal and external partners drove us forward. Their partnership and support will continue to be central to the advancement of our CSR strategy.”
Notable accomplishments in 2017 include:
Health in Action
  • An enhanced utilization management program to ensure that opioids are being prescribed and used appropriately, consistent with guidelines set by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Launch of in-store medication disposal units to safely collect medication that could otherwise be diverted, misused or abused
  • Significant progress against 2020 targets to help deliver the first tobacco-free generation, including 4.4 million youth reached with tobacco-free messaging and 128 new tobacco-free educational institutions
  • An expanded partnership between MinuteClinic and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to provide access to affordable health services for more than 120,000 veterans
  • Delivery of more than $6.4 million in services through the Project Health free health screening campaign, which since 2006, has resulted in more than $122 million in services provided
Planet in Balance
  • Submission of a science-based emissions reduction target for approval from the Science Based Targets initiative
  • The removal of chemicals of consumer concern across nearly 600 store brand beauty and personal care products
  • Progress toward the company’s 2020 target of sustainably sourced palm oil in all store brand products containing this ingredient
  • The diversion of 48 percent of company-generated waste to recycling and reuse through ongoing, data-driven improvement projects
Leader in Growth
  • Record spending with diverse and women-owned suppliers, and the establishment of new spending targets for 2020
  • Inclusion on DiversityInc’s Top 50 Companies for Diversity list for the first time, a result of a greater focus on diverse supplier spending and management-level recruitment
  • The opening of a Talent Connect Center in Fort Bragg, NC to connect service members and their spouses with career training and employment opportunities as they transition from military to civilian life
CVS Health’s 2017 CSR Report was developed in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Sustainability Reporting Standards, a global framework widely used by organizations to report on CSR and sustainability performance. The company completed a materiality assessment in 2017 and focused its reporting on topics that reflect its most significant economic, environmental, and social impacts, or that substantively influence the assessments and decisions of stakeholders.
The Report is available online at

5 Ways that City-focused Climate Funds Drive Building Energy Efficiency

Great article on reducing emissions in major hubs.

We will be cutting back on how often we post new blogs,but we appreciate our many followers and readers.  Thank you.

5 Ways that City-focused Climate Funds Drive Building Energy Efficiency

For the first time in history, half of the world’s population lives in cities. Cities hold economic weight, inspire a sense of belonging and loyalty (just ask a Red Sox fan), and are hubs for innovation and investment. And increasingly, cities are focusing on what can be done at the local level to promote clean, healthy, and prosperous communities and stepping up to the plate with commitments like America’s Pledge to meet Paris climate goals in the absence of a firm federal commitment. Through these bold acts, cities are making possible more ambitious action at the state and national level.

City-focused climate funds, which finance projects in a city that reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and increase resiliency, can provide positive environmental, economic, and health impacts. Such funds, including New York City Energy Efficiency Corporation (NYCEEC), The Atmospheric Fund (TAF) in Toronto, the London Green Fund (LGF), and Sustainable Melbourne Fund (SMF), have been able to create a substantial impact relative to the monies they have deployed by focusing on delivering value beyond access to capital alone. Other cities are joining the trend: in 2018, the City of Boston plans to launch Renew Boston Trust, which aims to use a market-based, self-funding model to increase energy efficiency investments and climate resiliency in its commercial and municipal buildings, nonprofit institutions, and multi-family properties.

Typically, these entities are revolving funds designed to be self-sufficient: interest and principal repayments are used to deploy new loans. Initial funding sources for these entities vary from government funds to utility incentives to private capital. Depending on the city, these climate funds have varying relationships to local government, from a unit of the municipality to full independence. These funds tend to target market-level returns, although some may be willing to make below market investments or provide more flexible terms in pursuit of GHG reduction goals. With slight modifications to address city-specific needs, existing city climate funds can scale to many other cities in the United States and around the world.

While city climate funds can provide financing for a range of clean tech and efficiency projects, we focus here on efficiency financing for large and mid-sized commercial buildings given the considerable role that buildings play in a city’s overall emissions. Indeed, while buildings contribute to roughly 40 percent of overall U.S. emissions, in big cities like New York and Chicago they can contribute up to 70 percent. Although construction of green buildings, which we define as those that go meaningfully beyond existing building codes to meet specific environmental goals, is becoming increasingly popular, the existing building stock faces barriers to implementing meaningful energy efficiency measures. Fortunately, well-structured city-specific funds can help overcome those barriers.
Barriers to Energy Efficiency Investment and Financing
The barriers to investing in building energy performance are well known and documented across multiple studies and industry stakeholder surveys. While certain barriers are more prominent in certain cities based on market demographics and realities, the challenges faced in driving increased investment in energy efficiency are largely consistent irrespective of location. These include:

Access to capital: Building owners may encounter a lack of financing options or high-cost financing that does not reflect the risk profile of energy efficiency projects; this can be particularly acute for small borrowers and small projects.
Insufficient payback or return: Projects may not meet a building owner’s (or lender’s) return thresholds, due to high upfront costs and/or long payback periods, as well as uncertainty of returns.
Landlord-tenant split incentives: Roughly half of all commercial buildings are leased. Building owners are unlikely to invest in efficiency if its tenants stand to capture all the benefits (in terms of lower utility bills).
Performance (savings) uncertainty: Building owners and financiers may not have sufficient confidence in the forecasted energy savings.
Uncertainty of re-sale value: Owners lack assurance that the real estate market will appropriately value efficiency investments. This is particularly true if the investment payback period is longer than the owner expects to hold the building. Therefore, owners may not invest in efficiency unless the financing instrument can be easily transferred to a subsequent owner upon sale.
Lack of technical expertise: Both building owners and financiers may not have the necessary technical understanding of energy efficiency measures to make informed investment and lending decisions.
Fragmented, small borrowers: The market for buildings is quite fragmented. Owners of small building portfolios may not have the right banking relationships to help finance energy efficiency projects, and financiers looking for scale may not have interest in financing those small projects.
Standardization: These projects often lack the type of standardization that banks rely on to build a pipeline of transactions to finance.
Lack of awareness or prioritization: Building owners may not be aware of energy efficiency opportunities, or they may not prioritize these opportunities if they don’t adequately understand the costs and benefits.
Five Key Ways City Climate Funds Can Address Barriers
While these barriers have traditionally held back energy efficiency financing, the public and private sector alike have a massive opportunity to capture a $290 billion opportunity in net present value in commercial buildings alone available from energy savings—while also creating better indoor and outdoor environments, improving the value of real estate assets, and enabling more competitive and vibrant city centers.
City-specific funds provide five key ways to address these barriers:
  1. Access to alternative and innovative financing:
City climate funds can provide building owners with more than capital. They offer innovative financing products that address multiple barriers. Importantly, these funds can provide financing approaches that:
  • Address landlord-tenant split incentives by shifting repayment obligations to the tenants who benefit from the landlord’s investment in energy conservation measures.
  • Absorb performance risk through tools like energy services agreements in which the building owner only pays for actual energy reduction.
  • Tie debt to property ownership/tenancy through on-bill repayment mechanisms or property assessed clean energy.
  • Provide off-balance sheet solutions to allow building owners to avoid additional debt at the corporate level.
  • Reduce upfront costs, including installation, due diligence, and financing costs, in order to improve project economics.
For example, the Sustainable Melbourne Fund has implemented environmental upgrade agreements, which allow tenants to contribute to the repayment of the efficiency investment through savings on their utility bill. The energy savings performance agreement model developed by TAF in Toronto allows building owners to pay none of the upfront cost of the efficiency investment and to receive 10 percent of the savings for 10 years (with 90 percent going to TAF) and 100 percent thereafter.
  1. Technical support: The NYCEEC provides technical assistance in addition to financing. This in-house technical expertise allows NYCEEC to assist with energy audits and technical assessments, providing building owners who lack this technical expertise with much needed support in evaluating which projects to undertake.
  2. Simplification: As a centralized resource, city climate funds can reduce complexity and be a hub for information on available incentives, rebates, green building certification, regulation, and economics that is tailored for the local market. This valuable local resource helps reduce information gaps for building owners for whom dedicating time and human capital to energy efficiency may not be a top priority.
  3. Aggregation and standardization: A city climate fund can aggregate many small projects with similar characteristics to reduce overall financing costs as well as drive standardization of documentation and deal structures. The narrow geographic focus of these funds makes this type of aggregation easier.
  4. Mobilization of private investment: City climate funds have demonstrated success in mobilizing private investment alongside the funds’ capital. By structuring energy efficiency loan products and undertaking technical due diligence, city funds open up a path to participation for market lenders with little expertise in the relevant technologies and their performance. For example, the London Green Fund brought in private investors such as local banks to achieve its targeted GHG reduction goals.
In addressing these barriers, city climate funds are able to meet existing demand for energy efficiency projects and, by their very presence, can spur increased demand for these measures. The availability of financing structures targeted to the local market, buoyed by other forms of relevant support, can provide the resources and motivation necessary to encourage building owners to undertake energy efficiency projects—and perhaps to be more ambitious in their efficiency targets.

RMI’s Sustainable Finance program stands ready to support cities, building owners, and impact investors seeking to establish innovative mechanisms that transform energy efficiency retrofit projects into bankable opportunities that revitalize buildings, create healthier work environments, and help cities meet their climate goals. Stay tuned for a forthcoming Insight Brief on additional opportunities for cities to drive climate leadership starting with the built environment, and the financing mechanisms that are unlocked by thinking and acting big on climate.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Department of Energy Announces $34 Million for Innovation Building Technologies Research and Development/RNN

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $34.5 million in funding to support building technology research and development (R&D). Buildings are the single largest energy-consuming sector in the U.S. economy, representing approximately 75% of the nation’s electricity use and 40% of its total energy demand, resulting in Americans spending nearly $400 billion each year to power homes, offices, schools, hospitals, and other commercial and residential buildings.
The Energy Department’s Building Technologies Office (BTO) is issuing two funding opportunities: Buildings Energy Efficiency Frontiers & Innovation Technologies (BENEFIT) 2018 and Solid-State Lighting Research. These funding announcements will further the Administration’s goal to drive U.S. technology leadership in solid-state lighting as well as develop innovative energy saving technologies, systems, tools, and models that could lead to significant reduction in building energy consumption by supporting innovative research in several topic areas.
BENEFIT 2018 will fund up to $19.5 million for approximately 15-25 cost-shared projects focused on early-stage R&D to enable the development of novel technologies that can improve efficiency, reduce the energy costs of the nation’s buildings, and facilitate interaction with the electricity grid. Under this funding opportunity, BTO is interested in six topic areas:
  • Topic 1 – Advanced Separation Technologies for Building Energy Efficiency
    Development of Innovative separation technologies, such as membranes and ad/ab-sorption technologies, capable of significantly improving building energy efficiency in HVAC, water heating and appliances, and building envelope applications.
  • Topic 2 – Advanced Building Materials
    Development of smart, tunable, and highly insulating building envelope materials to enable significant reductions in cooling and heating loads.
  • Topic 3 – High-Performance Windows
    Development of highly insulating R7 to R10 window technologies, as well as advanced coatings for dynamic glazing.
  • Topic 4 – Novel Approaches for Cyber-physical Systems in Buildings
    New and enhanced synergies at the nexus of building energy modeling and Sensors and Controls that together cover portions of the building cyber-physical space.
  • Topic 5 – Integration Research of Advanced Commercial Energy Efficiency Packages
    Testing of next-generation building systems and equipment that improve efficiency across two or more building end uses in real-world operating conditions.
  • Topic 6 – Advancements in Natural Gas and Other Fuel-driven Equipment
    Innovative solutions that significantly improve the energy efficiency of natural gas and other fuel-driven equipment and achieve a coefficient of performance of greater than 1.0.
Concept papers for BENEFIT are due no later than June 8, 2018 and full applications are due August 23, 2018. BTO will host a webinar for this funding opportunity on May 8, 2018 (register here).
The second funding opportunity, Solid-State Lighting (SSL) Research, will fund up to $15 million for  approximately 10-15 cost-shared projects to conduct early-stage, innovative research to drive further breakthroughs in solid-state lighting technology. This funding will accelerate the development of high-quality light-emitting diode (LED) and organic light-emitting diode (OLED) products with the potential to reduce lighting energy use for American families and businesses and to enhance U.S. global competitiveness. Under this funding opportunity, BTO is interested in four topic areas:
  • Topic 1 – Core Technology Research for LEDs, OLEDs, and Cross-Cutting Lighting Research
    These projects will develop innovative advancements in the underlying science for SSL technology, demonstrating scientific principles, technical application, and application benefits related to physiological impacts of light and light utilization efficiency.
  • Topic 2 – Proof-of-Concept and Prototype Development for LEDs and OLEDs
    These projects will pursue early-stage research to contribute to the development of SSL prototypes as well as advanced proof-of-concept SSL materials, devices, and luminaires. Research in this area will focus on high-efficacy LED prototypes, advanced LED lighting, LED power electronics, OLED light engines, OLED prototype lighting platforms, and OLED panel light extraction and utilization.
  • Topic 3 – Advanced Fabrication R&D
    These projects will focus on the underlying chemical and physical aspects of SSL fabrication, exploring LED advanced fabrication approaches, OLED substrate and encapsulation fabrication, and OLED panel fabrication.
  • Topic 4 – Innovative Lighting in a Limited Mock Field Application
    These projects will assess innovative lighting system solutions in limited mock field application settings. The technical resources and data sets developed will ultimately help researchers refine or refocus early-stage research and development of SSL-based devices, luminaires, and systems.
Full applications for SSL are due June 18, 2018. BTO will host a webinar for this funding opportunity on May 7, 2018 (register here).