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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Stay Another Day: The Green Revolution in Laos

Fantastic article--as we continue to look globally for the "business side of green"--in the International Business Times profiling the green revolution and sustainable tourism engulfing Laos.  Here's the first paragraph:  "There's something terribly right going on in Laos.  Engulfed in a green revolution, sustainable tourism is racing through the recently paved roads from the provincial cities to the remote edges of this pristine country.  From organic farm cooperatives to ethnic fashion shows, the idea is pulsing and putting money back where it belongs - with the people"

How sweet the last sentence:  "From organic farm cooperatives to ethnic fashion shows, the idea is pulsing and putting money back where it belongs - with the people"

Here's the link:  http://www.ibtimes.com/articles/154031/20110529/sustainable-tourism-voluntourism-volunteer-abroad-green-travel-and-tourism-eco-tourism-travel-greene.htm.


Here is a little more of the article: 
"Sustainable tourism is an incredible boon for a country like Laos as it has little in the way of industry.  Yet, how the idea took root in this country is a miracle.  The concept remains foreign in tourist-heavy Thailand whose Western music, entertainment and culture continues to float over the Mekong, much to the Lao government's dismay.
In Laos, sustainable tourism takes on many faces.
The folks at Green Discovery lay their claim as Laos' pioneer in adventure travel and ecotourism.  Opening their doors in 2000, they were indeed one of the first in this recent movement and today, they are committed to ensuring that the local people "not only benefit financially from tourism, but also are true business partners by helping to develop programs and activities."  Each trip includes a graph explaining where your money goes, making the entire process refreshingly transparent"

What lessons can we learn from the green revolution in Laos?  If anyone is expert on sustainable tourism, we'd like to hear from you and do a show on this.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Weekend Edition

Found this on the PR Wire: 

First Fuel Cell to Power Residential Building in New York,
Part of the story:
ROOSEVELT ISLAND, N.Y., May 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- "Yesterday, The Octagon, a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design® (LEED) Silver 500-unit apartment community on Roosevelt Island, made green history by becoming the first residential building in the State of New York to be powered and heated by a 400 kilowatt (kW) fuel cell from UTC Power. This installation marks a paradigm shift in the State's use of clean energy technologies, made possible through New York's progressive stance on energy policy.  The project was supported by $1.2 million in financial incentives from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The fuel cell arrived on Roosevelt Island this winter and is now operating at full capacity.

(Photo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110527/NE10381 )
"Roosevelt Island is a place where progressive green initiatives are at the forefront of our smart growth plans. We are proud of our island partners, including Becker + Becker, who are contributing to a greener Island and a cleaner City," said Leslie Torres, President and CEO of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation, the New York State Public Benefit Corporation responsible for the development and operation of Roosevelt Island.
The fuel cell, a PureCell® System Model 400, is a combined heat and power (CHP) system that represents a game-changing technology. It converts natural gas to electricity and heat through a combustion-free, electrochemical process to provide power and heat to meet the majority of the apartment building's energy demand.  The energy efficiency achieved by the fuel cell is significantly higher than the energy received from the grid and emissions are negligible.  Additionally, the fuel cell's process heat is captured to satisfy the building's space heating and domestic water requirements.

"We are so proud that the Multi-Employer Property Trust (MEPT) and Becker + Becker have selected UTC Power's PureCell System to provide reliable on-site power to this innovative and historic project," said Neal Montany, Director of UTC Power's stationary fuel cell business. "It is truly rewarding to know that the benefits of our efficient and clean fuel cell technology will touch the daily lives of the residents of The Octagon..."

Fuel cells could be a huge part of our energy landscape moving forward.  At Arpin, we are looking at joining forces with other tenants in this industrial park to share a fuel cell fed my natural gas. 60 Minutes did a great story on Bloom fuel cells, and there is a major producer on the East Coast in CT.  Very worth looking at.

Friday, May 27, 2011

New ‘solar customer benefit’ will spur solar energy, jobs across Vermont

Great news in VT:   The Governor yesterday signed a new bill spurring solar energy, and related jobs, through out the state.  We own a facility in Brattleboro, VT, and will most likely move ahead with renewable energy on that site.

Here's the link:  http://vermontbiz.com/news/may/new-‘solar-customer-benefit’-will-spur-solar-energy-jobs-across-vermont.

Here's part of the article: 

"Governor Shumlin signed the Vermont Energy Act of 2011 (H56) Wednesday in South Burlington. The law includes a new, statewide solar customer benefit that will help deliver net metered solar energy and jobs throughout Vermont.  

“There is a fiscal and environmental urgency for Vermont to move off fossil fuels and toward sustainable sources of power,” the Governor said at the bill signing ceremony, which was held at the Farm at South Village. The Village is a “new urbanist” sustainable community with a 150 KW net metered solar array to power an organic farming operation, wholesale production and refrigerated storage and distribution. 

Also participating in the bill signing were representatives for Encore Redevelopment, which developed the Village project, Renewable Energy Vermont, Gardener’s Supply, Alteris Renewables and others. In addition, the secretaries of Agriculture and Commerce, as well as the Commissioner of Public Service, attended the event. 

First initiated with Green Mountain Power’s (GMP) SolarGMP program, the 6 cents per kilowatt hour solar benefit helped provide the incentive to over 400 new solar installations.  The utility initiated the incentive as a way to reduce peak power and transmission costs and encourage the development of local solar energy..."

Read the rest when you can.  This is great news.

This is a absolutely the business side of green:  Legislation that can spur, across a state, economic development while reducing use of fossil fuel and emissions.  A big win-win.

We will be covering this story on a future edition of Renewable Now.

Also, the audio from our shows is now available in a radio show format on WARL, 1320 AM (either over the air or on their stream).  The first shows are now running:  with Julian Dash, RIEDC, and Al Dahlberg,  Project Get Ready.  More radio stations to follow soon.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Trucking Info Magazine

Some great stuff in Trucking Info this week, including articles on a split-cycle engine coming from a W. Springfield company, Navistar's investment in a Danish  company inventing a better aftertreatment process and profiling a company a Northeast company that just covered half its 570,000 warehouse with solar panels.  Take a look:

http://www.truckinginfo.com/clean-green/index.asp

Here's a sample:  "Amidst endless chatter about electric power and even fuel cells, the good old internal combustion engine clearly isn't going away any time soon. I refer you to the flurry of new engine designs we've seen lately. In my archly humble opinion, one of the most interesting is a split-cycle motor coming out of the Scuderi Group in West Springfield, Mass. The company is a seemingly well-funded development outfit that's intent on re-engineering the conventional four-stroke engine. Its global patent portfolio contains more than 476 patent applications filed and 154 issued in 50 countries.

And its SSC motor, the Scuderi Split Cycle, is even more intriguing now that it's achieved a 35 percent fuel-consumption decrease in a Nissan Sentra in an elaborate computer simulation. That testing was done by an independent third party, Scuderi Group boss Sal Scuderi tells me, using proper, accepted protocols.

His sights aren't set only on little cars, I hasten to add, and the engine design can just as easily have heavy-duty applications running diesel and other fuels. The company hasn't done those simulations yet, but they're coming. Scuderi's plan is not to manufacture engines, by the way, rather to license his technology. So far, interest has come mainly from the four-wheel world. Only one truck maker -- unnamed, but not North American -- has sniffed around. .... "


To find out a lot more about altenative fuels that will be powering our future fleets, go to arpin.tv.com and watch our show with Ocean State Clean Cities.


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

From EcoGeek/Arpin Broadcast Network

Very interesting possibility of creating hydrogen from sunlight (talk about an alternative, clean fuel--the discharge being water.  Here's the link:

http://www.ecogeek.org/hydrogen/3501

Here's some of it:

 "A team of scientists from the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University and others at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) are also working on a method to generate hydrogen from water using sunlight. This form of photo-electrochemical (PEC) water splitting uses molybdenum sulfide as a catalyst rather than platinum. Platinum has been known to work as a catalyst for PEC water splitting, but it is also a particularly rare and expensive mineral, which makes it problematic for widespread use. In addition to developing an inexpensive catalyst, the research has also worked on light absorbers to capture as much light energy as possible"

Watch Wendy Lucht from Ocean State Clean Cities talk about aternative fuels on Renewable Now today.  Tune in on Arpin Broadcast Network and send us your feedback.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Great day today for Renewable Now

We hit a record today for views (and it is early in the morning here back East): 247 and counting.

Here's our upcoming show:  Tune in at Arpin Broadcast Network (Arpin.tv.com).



Monday, May 23, 2011

Guest Blogger: Mark Learn

Mark sent the following link to us so you can get a good summary of the front runners in the EVSE market:  http://gm-volt.com/2011/05/20/coulomb-technologies-and-ecotality-ranked-top-charging-equipment-suppliers/

Here's part of the story:

"A recent report by Pike Research has identified two front runners in the still-only budding electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) industry.
The Colorado-based clean-tech research company said for now it is Coulomb Technologies and ECOtality based on their strategy and execution.
“The electric vehicle charging equipment market is in its formative stages, and business models are still developing as vendors gain experience with charging station deployments,” said senior analyst John Gartner. “Pure-play EVSE vendors are taking the early lead, but looming behind them are several companies that announced products in 2010 and will be shipping in volume during 2011. These major players – Siemens, GE, and Eaton, among others – have developed the makings of a good product strategy, but have yet to execute on their extensive global resources and marketing channels.”

As readers of this blog know, converting to electric cars is critical to the financial future of the country.  There is no greater "business side of green" than being a part of the new industrial revolution and trading your fossil fuel car for a domestically-supplied EV.

Thanks, Mark.  Keep the material coming.

Also, please go to Arpin Broadcast Network and watch our segment with Al Dahlberg of the Project Get Ready, and pick up the book, Jolt.  As auto dealer Al Cerrone says on an upcoming episode, "you will be glad to did".

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Toys "R" US installs huge solar system

Do you have a large, flat building with a rooftop with Southern exposure?  If you do, read about Toys "R" US PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) on their site in NJ, and start looking at the economics of a possible PPA on your site.

Here's the link:  http://www.ecogeek.org/solar-power/3500.

Here's part of the story:  A Toys "R" Us distribution facility in New Jersey will soon be home to the largest solar rooftop installation in the country.  The huge installation will feature 37,000 solar panels producing 5.38 MW of power.
Toys "R" Us has entered into a 20-year power purchase agreement with the Constellation Energy Group -- the builders of the project -- and will meet 72 percent of the facility's energy needs with the solar power system.  The facility's carbon footprint will be reduced by 4,569 tons.
The project just surpasses another huge solar roof in progress on top of the Jersey Gardens mall that will have a capacity of 4.8 MW.  Go New Jersey!
via Treehugger

A 5.38 MW system is huge, and part of why it works is the value of the RECS in NJ. Other states need to get as aggressive as NJ in supporting the economics of renewable energy.

We will work to bring a spokes person on from Toys "R" Us to talk about the project, costs (of which they will bear none), savings on electrictiy and much more.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Guest Blog by Greg Gerritt

Thanks, Greg, for sending this article along:  http://www.economist.com/blogs/babbage/2011/05/electric_cars.

Here's part of it: 

Electric cars

Horsepower v cash cows

May 17th 2011, 18:30 by The Economist online

"AS IF petrolheads did not already have reasons aplenty to hate electric vehicles. With oil prices rising inexorably (the recent dip notwithstanding) drivers of these silent, soulless battery-powered contraptions are set to look smugly on as gas-guzzlers burn a hole in their owners' pockets. Now, adding insult to injury, research suggests that electric cars might actually make a profit for their owners.
At present, in order to meet sudden surges in demand, power companies have to bring additional generators online at a moment's notice, a procedure that is both expensive and inefficient. If there were enough electric vehicles around, though, a fair number would be bound to be plugged in and recharging at any given time. Why not rig this idle fleet so that, when demand for electricity spikes, they stop drawing current from the grid and instead start pumping it back..."

And:

"What the power company would be paying for is not so much the electricity itself as the availability of that electricity at zero notice. At the moment, peaks in demand have to be sated by firing up expensive rapid-response generators, such as gas turbines. Speed of availability is as important as total capacity. Battery-driven cars, if plugged in appropriately, provide power instantly—faster, even, than a stand-by power station. That is where they truly score. And, for that reason, owners would actually be paid a tariff related to when and for how long their cars were available for the power company to tap. In Delaware, this amounts to about 30 cents an hour. Add in a fixed fee payable just for being part of the system and Dr Kempton and Dr Pearre think an income of $4,000 a year per car might be possible. That is a sum far greater than the $225 that Nissan, for instance, thinks will be the average annual cost of the electricity needed to power one of its Leaf..."

As future owners of EV's (I hope I can include you in this group), can we make this kind of money selling power back to the Grid?  We'll find out on a future episode of Renewable Now.

In the meantime, log on and see the episode with Al Dahlberg from Project Get Ready.  Come take a look at the charging station Arpin installed at the Cardi's in W. Warwick.  Become part of the new industrial revolution and go electric.  Say no to 13million barrels of imported oil a day, 70% of which goes to transportation.  Read the book, Jolt, and plug in your next car at home using domestic energy. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Today's Green News

A couple of good updates from Environmental Leader today:

Fleet Briefing: Nissan Leaf Torture Test, Fossil Fuel ‘Greener’ than Biofuel, Oil Price Predictions:

"Automotive manufacturer BYD has received an order for what it says will be the world’s largest all-electric bus fleet. The buses will serve the global collegiate athletic competition the International Universiade Games in Shenzhen, China this summer. Post-games, the buses will be incorporated into Shenzhen’s city bus fleet.
The trend toward cleaner transit buses will continue over the next several years, according to a recent report from Pike Research. The cleantech market intelligence firm forecasts that by 2015 alternative fuel vehicles will represent more than 50 percent of the 64,000 total transit buses that will be delivered worldwide during that year, up from 28% of total bus deliveries in 2010."

And:

"Finally, staff at automotive news service Edmunds Insideline.com have tested the endurance of an electric powered Nissan Leaf, by driving the car on a full charge until it stopped dead. The green vehicle lasted 132 miles on an oval track before running out of juice"

Here's the link if you want to read more:  http://www.environmentalleader.com/2011/05/13/fleet-briefing-nissan-leaf-torture-test-fossil-fuel-greener-than-biofuel-oil-price-predictions/.

Have you logged on to ABN and watched Renewable Now yet?

Monday, May 16, 2011

CSR Wire/ Conferences

Just found this on the Corporate Social Responsibility wire:

Green Initiatives Conference

Organizer:Fidelity One Conferences
Date:09.29.11, 09:00AM – 09.30.11, 02:30PM
Location:Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Sponsor:Fidelityoneconferences.com
Come and hear from America's top business and sustainability leaders like Carol Williams, President of Dow Chemical's Energy Division, about how they plan to tackle the issues, risks and challenges surrounding Sustainability!!!
The Green Initiatives Conference is the perfect forum for top sustainability executives to learn from each other and discuss the way forward with regards to the latest trends in Sustainability.
Smart Organizations are embedding sustainability into their "Organizational DNA." This event is geared towards everyone involved in spearheading Green Initiatives for their respective Organizations from the CEO; Chief Sustainability Officer-C.S.O, Corporate Strategists, Directors of Supply Chain, CFO to the CIO.
You will learn how leading Corporations and Organizations are moving their environmental initiatives from beyond just being a "cost center" to being a viable way to make a huge impact not just on the environment but on their financial and social bottom lines as well. Meet key Decision Makers and Solution Providers in one place.
The conference will give a 360 degree view of the hurdles and opportunities surrounding the sustainability issue and then address the business case for going Green across different functional areas.
Get up to speed on the latest developments...We are not leaving any stone unturned!!!
For more information, please contact:
Mitchie Mutyambizi Marketing Manager
Phone: 404-865-1438
Fax: 646-695-3144

Whether you attend or garner information off their site, you, too, will want to "learn how leading Corporations and Organizations are moving their environmental initiatives from beyond just being a "cost center" to being a viable way to make a huge impact not just on the environment but on their financial and social bottom lines as well." 

Off to film three more shows today, then working in Canada.  I will try to post from there this week.  

Sunday, May 15, 2011

From Gregg Gerritt, Part 2




http://prosperityforri.org/?page_id=108


The Shrinking Economy: Time to Get Real about Ecology (PART 2)
Greg Gerritt



Part of Getting Real: Full Cost Accounting 
"The US is actually gearing down.  A system of Full Cost Accounting would clearly demonstrate less is available after subtracting all the damage.    Our old forests are gone and we struggle to keep the second growth we have regained. Our oil is depleted and more and more found in very difficult places to work like the bottom of the Ocean. Food is cheap but has a huge carbon footprint and more and more of our soil sits at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico creating dead zones. We have already made it harder for working people to retire safely, have made medical care harder to access and ever more expensive, fallen behind the rest of the world in clean energy production. Our bridges are failing, and the talk is of shrinking government investments that ameliorate the worst effects of the games the rich play.  Detroit is coming back as an agriculture center, not a builder of cars.  
 
Rhode Island is probably a bit further along the road to ruin than most places. The starting point for the Western Hemisphere’s industrial revolution, Rhode Island is highly urbanized, has few natural resource industries, dammed rivers, poor soils, depleted fisheries, little agriculture, slowly recovering forests (the flip side of little agriculture), and more industrial brownfields than you can shake a stick at. It has some design based industries, many artists and other knowledge workers, but what it has placed its hopes on, besides windpower, seems to be the medical industrial complex, which is by far the biggest industry in the state.  Unfortunately the faster the medical industrial complex grows, the more it sucks the life out of the rest of the economy by making health care for all unaffordable, and draining resources that might be productively utilized elsewhere. (  http://prosperityforri.org/?page_id=37 <http://ProsperityForRI.org/?page_id=37>     http://prosperityforri.org/?page_id=29 <http://ProsperityForRI.org/?page_id=29>    “Health Care in the Economy”  RI Policy Reporter issue 17   March 29, 2006  )  The unacknowledged fundamental incompatibility between using health care as a growth industry and affordable healthcare for all, and the squeeze this puts on businesses, households, ecosystems, and communities when overall growth is exceedingly limited has become unbearable and an economic disaster, but understanding of this has not yet made it to the legislative chambers or city halls of Rhode Island.  Expanding TF Green Airport or giving money to Curt Schilling to produce video games are also not going to change the fundamental problems or provide a way forward.  Like Detroit, the fastest growing industry in Rhode island is agriculture. 
 
 
A way out of the vicious cycle? 
The politicians and the rich propose tax cuts as the answer to all of our problems.  This is the only way they can give themselves more money in a shrinking economy.  Unfortunately the only result of this is bad schools, deteriorating infrastructure and an unwillingness to face climate change and the ways people are contributing to the problem. Sometimes it seems as if China understands our problem much more clearly than American politicians do and therefore is willing to lend us more money as a way of hastening our demise as a great power.  
 
All over America, and for that matter all over the world, people are experimenting with new forms of economic development. Microlending, clean energy, organic agriculture, community gardens, Zip cars, and mass transit just to name a few. It is still on the edge, on the margins, and ignored by Wall Street until it becomes the next big thing, such as the pseudo organic agriculture being touted by biotech industries, but it is exactly these new ventures, focused on healing ecosystems and doing well and doing good simultaneously that are transforming and bringing prosperity to communities undone by Wall Street.  
 
The American election system is broken. A poll in The Economist found 77 percent of respondents agree. Some of the new tools of democracy would help. Ranked choice votes and proportional representation would help insure that all voices are heard and that new ideas have an opportunity to filter up from the practitioners. But any democracy would be threatened if basic honesty about the conditions we find ourselves in are kept from the discussion. Until discussion of the American economy takes into account ecosystem collapse and the end of growth, we shall continue to get governments that cannot solve the problem and we will get wildly swinging electoral cycles. We shall throw the bums out but we will bring in new bums and continue with the mess they made."
Agree, disagree?  You tell us.
Our first Renewable Now show is not available, on demand, on the Arpin Broadcast Network. We are filming three more tomorrow.









Friday, May 13, 2011

Great night and new blog from Gregg Gerritt

Arpin Group was fortunate enough to receive a Chaffee Conservation award last night, recognizing our installation of the first auto recharging facility in the state.  It was a great night, graced by the Governor whose dad the awards are named after.  Our sincere and humble thanks to the Environmental Council for this great honor and the privilege of attending with the other award winners.

Also, one of our future guests, Gregg Gerritt, Prosperity for RI. com, has been gracious enough to write an article (and blog), and off Renewable Now the chance to have him as a guest on our blog.  We'll include the first part today, and we'll finish tomorrow.

Here, by the way, is the link to the entire article if you want to read it all right now:  http://prosperityforri.org/?page_id=108.

And here is part 1.  :The Shrinking Economy: Time to Get Real about Ecology  
Greg Gerritt

For weeks after the 2010 elections the mass media continued to produce election analysis with the premise that the American electorate is very good at kicking out the party in power when the economy is not doing very well. Not doing well appears to mean the economy is not growing fast enough, at least 3 percent and preferable 4 or 5 percent a year. The articles claim that without this rate of growth unemployment rises and a swath of Congress pays with their seats.

Neither party has been able to find a path out of the endless morass we find ourselves in, at least not using the conventional wisdom and the conventional approach to governance.  So we end up in gridlock and a holding pattern that allows the large corporations and Wall Street to continue to loot America while the rest of us struggle. We throw the bums out of Congress whenever we have to bail out the rich after another bubble bursts. We replace them with other bums who will continue to bail out the rich.   Such is progress

My premise, and that of many others who look closely at the linkage between ecology and economy, is that due to ecological collapse it may no longer be possible to grow the economy of the United States. The conditions essential for rapid economic growth -- a massive infusion of natural resources and cheap places to throw the tras -- are no longer applicable to the United States or for the most part on the planet. Cycles of prosperity in the industrial west are becoming ever shorter, and are based more on bubbles and chicanery than actual production. Wall Street and the government pretend that we have economic growth, but if the U.S. adopted some sort of full-cost accounting, refusing to count capital depletion as income, not adding the repair of the damage done to communities by industrialism to the economy, but rather subtracting the damage and cost of repair from the economy, the numbers would show the U.S. economy was actually shrinking. It would not even register the phony growth we now see only during bubbles.

The proximate cause of the economic crash were the financial games played by Wall St. Some claim the continuation of the economic slowdown is the tax structure or the size of the government. The reality is that it is the destruction of ecosystems and depletion of natural resources: the overfishing, deforestation, erosion, elimination of wild things, dirtying of the water and fouling of the air, that has caught up with us. Our technology is not going to fix this in a way that opens the door to growth ever after. Until the political parties describe what is really going on, why a gearing down is appropriate and necessary and how they are going to engineer it rather than doing ever crazier things to prop up the appearances of growth, they will alternate in failed policies and majorities in Congress.

The original version of this essay, available at http://prosperityforri.org/?page_id=95 <http://ProsperityForRI.org/?page_id=95>   provides a variety of links to the ecological data and the data that points out that nearly all of the growth in income in the US has for more than 20 years gone to the richest 1% of the population. For at least 40% of the population their actual wealth, wealth, not income, has already shrunk.  In other words both ecological collapse and the complete stagnation of the economy are our daily reality despite what the media tells us about the American Dream.


Gregg, thanks you so much for being on the show and contributing to the blog.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Chaffee awards and NY Times article

Great first show today.  Streaming live again at 4.  Go to Arpin Broadcast Network (arpin.tv.com) to watch. Thank you, Julian Dash, for a great job.

Thursday night I am honored to accept a Chaffee Environmental award on behalf of Arpin Group.  The award recongnizes our effort in installing the first electric auto recharging station in RI.  Timing is great as our first show for Renweable Now broadcast on a live stream earlier in the day.

Today's NY Times Opinion Page does a great job of citing some of the compelling statics on the future gowth of EV's, and hybrids, and reports "The Electrification Coalition, an electric-vehicle advocacy group, estimates that if, by 2040, 75 percent of all miles driven in the United States are powered by electricity, oil consumption by light-duty vehicles will drop from the current level of nearly nine million barrels a day to two million."

Here is the link:  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/10/opinion/10Fletcher.html?hp.

Here is the first part of the Opinion:  "THE American response to rising gas prices has been depressingly predictable. We’re shocked to see prices top $4 a gallon, as if it’s never happened before. We demand that something be done — not to reduce our dependence on oil, but to cut the cost of a fill-up. Fortunately the White House is standing behind a goal that could genuinely transform the nation’s automotive fleet: putting one million electric vehicles on the road by 2015.

The plan is ambitious, but it’s more realistic than its critics maintain. Some argue that because batteries can’t yet propel a full-size car 500 miles on the highway and recharge in a few minutes, we should give up and focus on squeezing better mileage out of existing technology

But many of the electric vehicles that will count toward President Obama’s goal won’t run on electricity alone. They will combine batteries, electric motors and internal-combustion engines to use as little gasoline as possible while still doing everything Americans expect their cars to do. Electrification is not an all-or-nothing proposition — it’s a process, the gradual replacement of gas-burning engines with batteries and electric motors.

The process has already begun. Last December, the first mass-produced electric vehicles of the 21st century — the Chevrolet Volt, which runs on battery power for up to 50 miles before a backup gasoline engine kicks in, and the Nissan Leaf, a purely battery-powered five-passenger hatchback — began shipping to customers. Tesla Motors has been selling small numbers of expensive electric sports cars since 2008. Ford will soon come out with a plug-in model of its own, and Toyota will release a plug-in version of the Prius hybrid. (The current Prius can only run gas-free for short stretches and at low speeds.)"

Great article.  Read the rest when you can.  And my thanks to the wonderful people at the Environmental Council for their award and honor and advising me about this article and contributing to the blog.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Renewable Now getting picked up around the world

With our recent flurry of releases we've issued, in anticipation of our world premier this Thursday, May 11, stories about the show are starting to get published in many places.  Here's one I found yesterday:


Green Technolgy News
TMCNet:  New Web-based Show, ReNewable Now, Focuses on the
[May 06, 2011]

New Web-based Show, ReNewable Now, Focuses on the "Business Side of Green"

WEST WARWICK, R.I. --(Business Wire)--
On May 11, the creators of Arpin Broadcast Network will debut a new Web-based show, ReNewable Now, an eco-conscious series dedicated to the "business side of green." Peter Arpin, partner of Arpin International Group and award-winning green business advocate, hosts the program at ReNewableNow.TV.
"Businesses today are only just beginning to realize the substantial cost savings that 'going green' can create for them," said Peter Arpin. "Our show features discussions with experts at the intersection of green technology and business, who offer valuable data and convincing arguments for why companies should adopt environmentally friendly programs and how they can take steps to implement them."
The show will be launched through a world premiere broadcast on Wednesday, May 11, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. EDT at ReNewaleNow.TV. Every week, a new episode will premier live and then be made available "on demand" the next day.
The inaugural show will feature guest Julian Dash, director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation's Renewable Energy Fund, who will discuss how his organization is helping businesses move towards a greener economy.
ReNewable Now brings together government officials, business leaders, community groups, inventors, activists and others from around the world to shed light on ways in which companies can introduce green technologies, programs and practices for conducting activities in an environmentally and economically responsible manner.
During each broadcast, Peter Arpin and his guests will explore ways to help companies around the world progress toward sustainable development and engage in environmentally smart practices. The ReNewable Now series challenges viewers to recognize how effective environmental management can positively impact corporate profitability and sustainability.
ReNewable Now is currently inviting guests from companies, non-profits, and government organizations from around the world who have a story to share about the "business side of green." To be featured on an upcoming episode, visitReNewableNow.TV and click on the "Become a Guest" button to submit your application.
Peter Arpin is part of the fourth generation of family members to run Arpin Group, the U.S.-based moving and storage company first established in 1900. Via his company, Arpin Renewable Energy, Peter Arpin currently leads a team which conducts low-carbon growth research and development initiatives for businesses. Visit Peter Arpin's ReNewable Now Blog at http://cts.businesswire.com/ct/CT?id=smartlink&url=http%3A%2F%2Farpingreen.blogspot.com%2F&esheet=6712922&lan=en-US&anchor=http%3A%2F%2Farpingreen.blogspot.com%2F&index=5&md5=8538fa4433a1643098d88644cdfb03cb..
Log on to the new ABN (Arpin Broadcast Network), and watch the show on  Thursday.  A historic day was we march towards a cleaner future.         


Monday, May 9, 2011

The new ABN (Arpin Broadcast Network) is live

The home network for Renewable Now is broadcasting on its new platform:  ABN 2.  You can log on at arpin.tv.com.  Our first show runs live on Thursday, 10a, EST, with a second live stream at 4p, EST.  Log on to take a look between now and Thursday.

Also, found this on Green Technology World today (green.tmcnet.com): 

Bob Vila Teams Up With GreenTowns.com to Promote Sustainability

"Bob Vila, a pioneer in helping share green ideas and promoting new sustainable home renovation and repair products and technologies, has tackled a new role as partner and featured expert in the launch of a new online network, GreenTowns.com, a digital platform that connects and celebrates green initiatives and the people leading them in towns across America.


“Every town has its own unique challenges to finding green solutions. We want to help!” said Vila, CEO of BobVila.com. “The audience of BobVila.com is interested in sustainable building and green efforts, and we hope that our partnership with GreenTowns.com will connect them with specialists and local citizens across the United States who share the same green commitment.”

With the partnership, Vila hopes to reconnect with those home renovation enthusiasts he has associated with for more than 30 years, as well as with new home renovation fans who believe strongly in the idea of green technologies dominating the future of home building and renovation.

Vila’s home renovation and repair website is an eye-opener for all those who believe that ‘going green’ is expensive and non-aesthetic, revealing how small changes can have a big impact on helping the environment"

Take a look at GreenTowns.com, and we will get them, and Bob, an invitation to be on the show.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Improve Your Property Value By Going Green

As we focus on the business side of green here at Renewable Now, we found a good article on White Picket Fence on simple ways of improving the value of your property by going green.  Here it is:

"With the real estate market the way it is today, you can’t put too much emphasis on improving your property value and the attractiveness of your home to potential buyers.  One of the easiest, most affordable, and best ways to make your properties the perfect properties to attract buyers or renters is to go green.
That’s because going green isn’t just about the environment anymore. When it comes to real estate and home buying, it’s also about efficiency. When the real estate market is struggling, and the economy is tight, like it is right now, anything that speaks to buyers’ sense of thriftiness is a big plus.  Going green doesn’t necessarily mean needing permits and spending a lot of money renovating.  Some simple changes can make a big difference.

Including energy efficient appliances in the price of the home might not seem like a big deal–but to today’s buyers it is. It gives them a chance to include the price of the upgrades in their house payment financing and it can make the difference between two real estate properties that are otherwise equal. Having up to date inspections and maintenance on climate control systems, refrigerators, washers, dryers, and so forth can make a property much more attractive.

Have the house checked for drafts, as well.  This is especially necessary with older homes.  Potential buyers may like the price of an older home but think about heating and cooling costs over the years and shy away. More people consider these things when buying real estate than ever before.  Some simple checks and repairs can make climate control much more efficient, even in an older home or office.
Small changes can turn mediocre properties into perfect properties!"

We'd love to have a real estate expert do a monthly blog with us, as a guest, talking more about this and introducing other money-saving techniques to our audience.  We'd love to do a show with that expert, too.  Please get in touch with us if you are interested.

Renewable Now broadcast live, for the first time ever, on May 11.  Welcome to the show.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Whoa mama!

Nice article from Terra Pass (a very good, carbon offset organization) about advocating home energy audits for moms in honor of Mom's Day coming up this weekend.  Here's the link:  http://www.terrapass.com/blog/posts/whoa-mama?utm_source=bronto&utm_medium=email&utm_term=Whoa+mama%21&utm_content=peterarpin%40msn.com&utm_campaign=Newsletter+05%2F04%2F2011.

Here's bits and pieces, but read the whole thing and get those home audits going: 

"This Mother’s Day, I’m not going to jump on the bandwagon of eco-friendly products. By all means, please (as always) consider the environmental impact of your gifts or check out these great gift ideas from Huffington Post, Treehugger, and Grist. But if I have to read another blog post about how flowers are destroying the planet, I’ll just get depressed."

And: 

"According to an online survey conducted in February by Harris Interactive, only 11% of Americans conduct home energy evaluations or audits. That’s disappointingly low when on a yearly basis, Americans spend $241 billion (yup, with a B) on residential energy costs, resulting in 1.2 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions. Conducting a home energy audit can help identify problems, determine efficiencies, lower carbon footprints, and best of all, save loads of money.

And: 

"Some helpful resources from the DOE and EPA for home energy audits include: Energy Star, Home Energy Score, Energy Savers, and the Home Energy Saver™."

And everything in between is good, too.

On our first show, which will broadcast live on May 11, in 5 days, Julian Dash from EDC will touch on some of the many funding programs state EDC's, and the local utility companies, administer for helping consumers and businesses conduct energy audits and finance, cheaply, investments in reducing use/waste and alternative forms of energy.  Be watching on the new ABN, Arpin Broadcast Network, arpin.tv.com which goes live on May 9, two days before Renewable Now broadcast live around the world.

Happy Mother's Day weekend.  Enjoy.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

This Common-Sense Change Makes Good Business Strategy

Great article, with some interesting stats, on The Motley Fool site today.  Here's the link: http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2011/05/04/this-common-sense-change-makes-good-business-strat.aspx.

Here's part of the report: 

"Going green" is a popular strategic destination these days. However, it's one thing to rejoice that you've decided to start that journey, and another to actually get there.
While more business leaders and investors now embrace the general idea of environmentally friendly initiatives, the reality of their actions might still fall short of their ambitions. To keep businesses on the right track, savvy shareholders may need to give them a push.

What's your damage?
Last year, environmental research firm Trucost calculated that human activity caused $6.6 trillion in environmental damage in 2008. The top 3,000 global corporations alone caused $2.15 trillion of that projected harm. If this course continues, annual environmental costs could reach $28.6 trillion by 2050. But even as they try to veer off this expensive, unhealthy path, some companies may struggle to change the ways they think about doing business.


Environmental Leader recently reported on a study conducted by U.K.'s Warwick Business School and University of Bath School of Management. After examining 25 years' worth of academic and industry research, the authors concluded that most companies' efforts to create "sustainable supply chains" have focused more on managing risk and avoiding public relations crises than establishing any true environmental benefit.

The authors called out Mattel (Nasdaq: MAT  ) and Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) as examples. Toxic lead paint cropped up in Mattel's children's toys a few years back, while Apple, despite pledges of eco-friendliness, still faces accusations of sweatshop policies, worker suicides at its contracted Chinese manufacturers' plants, and lax environmental standards."

Roll that number around in your head a few times:  6.6 trillion dollars of environmental damage in 08.  Shocking.  From the business side of green, what a disastrous financial hole to dig out of.

So, let's stop the loss and stop the talk and do the right things.  Let's change the way we do business.  Start watching Renewable Now on May 11 and learn how to truely go green.  Together, we will "get there".

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Billion Acts of Green

USA Today has launched a site to help people of all nations join a forever Earth Day Celebration, and come together to perform a billion acts of green.  Here's the URL:  http://www.usatoday.com/marketing/brand_mkt/splash/greeneffort/index.htm.

This is a great site and effort.  The paper offers readers a chance to sign up for green living tips, get expert advice from their reporters, green their home, offices, and participate and contribute in a global effort  "to commit to an act that helps reduce carbon emissions and promotes sustainability"

Here is a sampling of yesterday's articles on that page: 

The latest headlines from USA TODAY


Royal wedding of Kate Middleton, Prince William has green twist
How green will the royal wedding of Prince William and commoner Kate Middleton be? Because of the sheer size and grandeur of ...
Which U.S. cities have dirtiest and cleanest air?
How clean is your air? Most U.S. cities with the dirtiest air are getting cleaner but half of Americans still live in areas ...
On Earth Day, more green light bulbs
What's notable on Earth Day 2011? While technological changes are sweeping the U.S. economy, perhaps the biggest switch for ...
Home energy upgrades get U.S.-backed loans
Many U.S. homeowners are now eligible for up to $25,000 in federally-insured loans to make energy-efficient upgrades such as ...
Gallup: Fewer Americans see climate change as threat
Fewer Americans and Europeans view climate change as a threat.

One of your first acts will be to watch the live world premier of Renewable Now on May 11...one week from today.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Ulysses Diversified Holdings Corporation Provides An Update On The Electric Car Charging Infrastructure

Great story on The Street regarding Walgreen's newest store opening, including an electric car charging station.  Here it is: 

"Ulysses Diversified Holdings Corporation (PINKSHEETS: UDHC) today issues an update to the investment community on the Company's progress for the electric car charging stations infrastructure. We are pleased to announce our first official Level II charging station installation has been completed at the Walgreens in Oak Park, IL.

Our Governor, Patrick Quinn, was on hand on Tuesday, April 19, 2011, to give a speech highlighting all of the green technologies used to build this beautiful new Walgreens store. As our Governor spoke, he pointed out the geothermal heating system, the new LED lights and the use of natural lighting that this new building design provided. Additionally, he pointed out the fact that Walgreens has healthy choices with fresh fruits and wellness centers that continues the green initiatives supported by this company. I came away from this press conference with a great sense of pride in this administration and their dedication to our neighborhoods, our state and our personal well being. I am inspired by today’s event seeing first hand how working together with such a wonderful group of companies, we can make a difference right now.

Arpin Group installed the first auto recharging station in RI last year, and we talk about that on an upcoming show with Al Dahlberg, Project Get Ready.  What I love about this article, though, is the quote "I am inspired by today’s event seeing first hand how working together with such a wonderful group of companies, we can make a difference right now". 

Who are the wonderful group of companies in your town, city that people feel good about?  Is your company part of that select group?  How great would it be to have people writing such glowing comments about you and your company?

Contact me if you have positive things to post about your company and your investment in our earth's future health.  Let's hope we see many new Walgreens stores in our neighborhoods inspiring the same pride in every community and town.

Be watching, 8 days from now, for the live, world premier of Renewable Now

Monday, May 2, 2011

Changes at the local chapter of Green Building Council

ProJo, a RI paper, wrote this weekend about RIGBC's Ex Director, Connie McGreavy leaving and moving back into the private sector.  Connie had started the chapter back in 2008, and had done a fantastic job.

We are fortunate enough to profile RIGBC and their work on one of the first episodes of Renewable Now (already shot and ready to premier in late May, after the May 11th show with Julian Dash and EDC).  As noted in this recent article, this local chapter of GBC helped enact two critical laws, one of which requires that the state energy conservation code be upgraded to international standards, and the other mandating that public buildings be constructed to USGBC standards--both major milestones.

And, directly relating to the business side of green, our focus, this high energy conservation standard helped attract 22 million in federal stimulus money to this state.  What a return on investment !!!.  All of our legislation should have such positive impact.

Does the right investment in green pay off?  You bet it does.

Connie is returning to her firm, Conserve by Design, and thinking about finding a job as a sustainability office in a major company.  Contact me if you'd like to get in touch with Connie.