Thursday, October 30, 2008

You Can Vote However You Like

Millennials... they get it.

with a nod to T.I.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Clean Energy Capitalism

Engineering and innovation in clean energy technologies will define our generation. Much the same way that the World Wars defined our grandparents generation ('The Greatest Generation") and the way they built up America in the 20th Century. The way in which we approach, handle and solve the problems associated with finding renewable energy sources, and in utilizing them to their fullest extent, will define our generation. Millennials grew up in an age where oil (energy) was always cheap, it was so cheap and abundant (and paid for by our parents) that we never thought too much about it. It was a commodity, like any commodity, milk, bread, etc. We never thought, as we sat and watched Mom or Dad fill up the tank every week that this would come to define us. And yet we have begun to grow into this environment where everyone has started telling us we can't fill up that tank the same way Mom and Dad used to, indefinitely. Its not an option, something has to change, we need to find another way to harvest energy. We will all, at some point, be asked to invest in this sacrifice. Its a little like 'telling us what we don't want to hear" but within the sense of motivation rather than deviation. Unlike the cloud of gloom associated with the staggering rise of the national deficit put on the shoulders of our generation, I believe we can shed and fight the cynicism of that crisis with the optimism in the opportunity that lies within this crisis. If we are cognisant to the idea that the clean energy revolution will come to define the sacrifice and accomplishment of our generation, why not commit to embracing the power it could give us and our country, when we put a tag on it and sell it to the rest of the world. 

Ideas that could seriously change the landscape:

Clean Energy 2030 - Google, on October 1st released its $4.4 trillion clean energy proposal they have named "Clean Energy 2030". It has some bold benchmarks and fascinating statistics you can find more on here

Coskata -  Coskata, Inc. is a Warrenville, Illinois based energy company researching the production of cellulosic ethanol from woodchips (or any variety of items found in trash). The estimated cost of production via this technology is under $1 per gallon, as opposed to corn-based ethanol costing approximately $1.40 per gallon. Video that explains it all Here.  More here:

Architecture 2030 The ChallengeThe built environment is entirely based on buildings that ignore the environment. Instead of passive solar and insulation we have chosen buildings that require huge inputs of cheap energy. Today, buildings use 76% of all the energy produced at coal plants. By implementing The 2030 Challenge* to reduce building energy use by a minimum of 50%, we negate the need for new coal plants. Buildings are responsiblee for about half (48%) of all energy consumptionn and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the US annually, and they use 76% of all the energy produced by the nation's power plants. If you are serious about energy Independence and climate change, you must tackle the Building Sector. Here is some hope from architect Ed Mazria 

Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers - The world's most renowned venture capitalists (funding most notably - Netscape, Genentech, and Google) have committed over $1 billion to green innovation. By the beginning of autumn, Kleiner had financed 40 different green-tech companies and raised a total of about $1 billion to that end. Some of the firm’s fledging green ventures were evolutionary improvements on current technologies that would soon hit the market, others promised to revolutionize various aspects of the energy economy in solor power and bio fuels. Kleiner, who typically had seen a dozen business plans a year related to new green tech companies, now sees over 100 every month. Kleiner partner, Randy Komisar, said the firm’s green-tech investments didn’t seem terribly risky to him because the energy market was so large and outdated. “I’m so dead certain that we’re solving the next huge problem for the planet,” he said. “I’m not very good at hitting the bull’s-eye. I need a big target. And this is the biggest target I’ve ever seen in my life.” More on green within capitalism here.