Data from the first quarter of 2010 show a solid growth in global clean energy investment. While China maintained its global lead with clean energy investments of $6.5bn, the wind energy sector saw a global investment of $14.1bn, making it the biggest renewable energy sector. In spite of some lingering concerns, a record overall new investment in clean energy worldwide is forecast for the year 2010.
Sustainable Brands Boot Camp’s eighth webinar session served as an introduction to sustainability transformation in businesses. By providing concrete examples from a case study, Bob Domenz described the practical steps and strategies needed to build a culture of sustainability in an organization, and to effectively engage employees and customers in the process.
There has been an enormous growth in national and state-level voluntary campus sustainability programs in the U.S. in recent years. These programs not only help universities and colleges institutionalize sustainability principles into everyday processes and actions, but also create a common knowledge pool of resources and best practices that enable these institutions to build strong sustainable communities.
The RES Alliance for Jobs, a coalition of America’s renewable energy companies and national renewable energy associations, has released a new study showing that a 25% by 2025 national Renewable Electricity Standard would create hundreds of thousands of new jobs in the United States. The “Jobs Impact of a National Renewable Electricity Standard” study found that a 25% by 2025 national RES would result in 274,000 more renewable energy jobs over no-national RES policy. This additional employment is equivalent to 2.36 million additional job-years by 2025. The study found that new jobs would be supported by renewable energy in every region of the United States. While the biomass, hydropower and waste-to-energy industries would see significant job gains in the Southeast, the states of the Great Plains and Midwest would employ thousands developing their wind resources and the Western United States would see job gains in its solar and hydropower industries. Without stronger near-term targets than currently envisioned, the study found that industries like wind will experience flat job growth and long-term stagnation, while the U.S. biomass industry could collapse altogether. The Alliance recommends that aggressive near and long-term federal RES targets should be pursued in order to attract manufacturing investment in the sector and to ensure global competitiveness of the U.S. renewable energy industry.
Call for Presentations: Sustainability Virtual Summits on Information and Communications Technology Issues
Proposals are invited for virtual presentations at the Sustainability Virtual Summits scheduled for March, September and November of 2010. The three summits will focus on sustainability issues pertaining to the Information and Communications Technology, Smart Business Operations and Smart Infrastructure sectors respectively. Presentation proposals may include new ideas, technologies, strategies, practical outcomes, research and case studies in line with conference themes. All three events are global in scope and participation as an attendee is free of charge. They will feature virtual exhibitions, conferences and keynote speeches in order to save travel time and eliminate associated greenhouse gas emissions.
LCA Sustainable Supply Chain USA 2010 (‘Measuring and Addressing Environmental & Social Impacts Throughout the Entire Life Cycle and Supply Chain’), the 7th event in the International Carbon Footprinting conference series, will be held on April 28-29 2010 in Chicago. The event will address sustainability and CSR issues pertaining to product life cycle assessment and supply chain with a focus on the consumer products industry sector.
Scientists at the California Institute of Technology have developed a new type of solar cell that comprise of arrays of thin silicon wires embedded in polymer substrate. The unique optical interactions between these wires provide the cells with an enhanced light absorption capability and improved internal quantum efficiency over conventional solar cells. These new cells are much cheaper to produce on account of the very low amounts of silicon needed to build them. The superior structural flexibility possessed by the silicon wire array solar cells is expected to further reduce their production cost since they can be produced using a lower-cost process.
Culture and Local Governance / Culture et Gouvernance Locale is now accepting manuscript submissions for its ‘Culture and Sustainable Communities’ special issue to be published in September 2010. Papers are invited across a broad range of theory and practice of cultural sustainability planning within the municipal context. Potential themes include, but are not limited to, case studies of municipalities that incorporate culture within sustainability planning, new strategic approaches and frameworks of incorporating culture within sustainability initiatives, theoretical examinations and adaptation of cultural considerations within the sustainability paradigm, and the interplay between diversity and sustainability in municipal cultural plans. Culture and Local Governance is a peer-reviewed open access online journal publishing original work, both theoretical and empirical, on the relation between culture and local governance. This special issue takes as a foundational understanding that culture is by nature diverse and evolving, and intercultural realities and relationships must be incorporated as integral to any understanding of culture and sustainability in contemporary cities and communities. These varied, distributed efforts reflect a quickly emerging field of inquiry and practice, which this special issue hopes to reflect.
Presentation proposals are now being accepted for the 2010 Lean and Green Summit that will be held July 12 – 13, 2010 in Savannah, GA. Proposals are invited in the areas of Governance and Management, Operations and Facilities, Design and Process Innovation, Human Resources and Corporate Culture, Marketing and Communications, and Partnerships and Stakeholder Engagement. The Summit aims to bring together the passions and knowledge of advocates of operational excellence who see the implications lean principles have in sustainability, as well as environmental advocates who wish to move industry toward sustainability and want to learn how lean operations can contribute to that goal. Senior level executives in diverse industries who have first-hand experience with instituting lean and green processes should consider presenting at this Summit. They will make 30 minute presentations about real life case studies of implementing lean and green principles in one of the six areas listed above. Each presentation will be followed by interactive discussion and Q&A session in order to expand the information flow and idea generation in the group.