A detailed review of 12 U.S. based synthetic biology, biofuel & biochemical companies that are developing third and fourth generation biofuels, bioindustrial & household chemical, and food additive products; using synthetic biology to produce engineered microorganisms and specialty enzymatic products. Each company is examined in turn, looking at its financials and the uniqueness and strength of its processes and technology as well as at any important partnerships or alliances that have been formed.
This post reports on a recent survey that indicates that the green roof sector in the US and Canada is enjoying excellent growth in spite of the very difficult economic environment that is prevailing in the building sector in general. The survey reports a growth of 28.5% and provides some background on what types of buildings and what cities are leading the adoption of green roofs.
In a troubling development for proponents of geologic carbon sequestration a Saskatchewan farmer has just made public an independent study that links high levels of CO2 found in their farm’s soil to the thousands of tons of CO2 that is currently being pumped into deep oil bearing deposits under their land by Canadian Energy giant Cenovus.
Progress was made on a number of important issues at the UN Climate Change Conference in Cancun last week, but the US Senate’s failure to pass clean energy legislation tied the hands of negotiators to come to a full global deal.
Industrial Ecology is the practice of making industrial systems operate more like natural systems. This involves less wastage and associated benefits in terms of profitability and environmental improvement. However, in order for these systems to work it is essential that those indstries involve are capable of beneficial interaction. This article asks whether, given the required interaction options, retrofitting of industrial ecology priniciples to exisiting industry has potential.
Anaerobic Digestion is one of the more promising biological technologies for sustainable waste management and has the potential to turn a large and worsening agro-headache into a growing opportunity for sustainable farming. It can extract useful biogas energy and high quality fertilizer from manure and other problematic agro waste products while also reducing the air and water pollution and emissions of greenhouse gases from a farming operation. Anaerobic Digestion harnesses natural living biological processes to maintain the natural carbon cycle and extract useful energy and fertilizer byproducts from what had been problematic waste streams. It is well suited for many types of farming operations and is an important sustainable farming practice.
UPDATE: Department of Agriculture announced a public/private partnership to help spread the use of anaerobic digester technology in dairy operations with the goal of reducing their greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2020.
The expansion project of the Vancouver Convention Centre was designed to be a showcase sustainable building and has been designed constructed to meet the LEED Gold Standard in sustainable building design. It features a sweeping green roof that is the 2nd largest in North America.
The Solar Decathlon is a competition in which teams of college and university students compete to design, build, and operate the most attractive, effective, and energy-efficient solar powered house. The winners of the 2009 competition – the fourth to be held – were announced on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. by U.S. Department of Energy Deputy Secretary Daniel Poneman. The contest is organized by DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory and supported by event and team sponsors from the private sector.
New figures released recently show that the number of companies and other organizations publicly disclosing their performance against a range of key sustainability indicators has risen markedly over the last year. The Global Reporting Initiative is now tracking of over 1000 organizations worldwide who issued sustainability reports based on the GRI G3 Guidelines in 2008 – the highest number ever recorded. The figure represents an increase of 46 per cent on the 2007 figure of 685.