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Wed12172014

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New diesel propulsion system cuts shipping emissions by 75%

A group of engineers have developed a new method of propelling a marine vehicle through water with the use of a series of strategically placed diesel engines. According to Gamma Light and Heavy Industries Ltd., their Gamma Propulsion System, can bring down the current fuel usage of the shipping industry by 75 percent, allowing for the corresponding emission reductions.

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Wells Fargo pledges more than $30 billion in environmental investments

Diversified financial services company Wells Fargo announced that it will be investing at least $30 billion by 2020 in loans and other investments in support of a “greener” economy, which will include $100 million in community grants for grassroots environmental initiatives. The company also made a pledge to increase energy efficiency by 40 percent.

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30-MW solar project powers Tibetan city

A newly-operational 30-megawatt solar photovoltaic generation plant will reduce the number of winter power shortages in the sunshine-rich city of Xigaze in Tibet, China. Located 3 kilometers northwest of Xigaze city proper, the autonomous region’s second-largest city, the plant is the first phase of a large-scale solar power project being constructed by Linuo Power Group.

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Two rare earth metals might not keep up with demand – M.I.T.

As low-carbon industries grow, some doubt that the available supply of rare earth metals – essential components in wind turbines and advanced batteries – can keep up with demand. Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Materials Systems Laboratory looked at 10 of these metals and found that two, neodymium and dysprosium, are going to face serious supply challenges in the coming years.

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Two rare earth metals crucial to low-carbon shift facing scarcity

A large-scale shift from coal-fired electric power plants and gasoline-fueled cars to wind turbines and electric vehicles could increase demand for dysprosium and neodymium, two already scarce metals found almost only in China. A study in the American Chemical Society’s journal Environmental Science & Technology said demand could go up by 600 to 2,600 percent over the next 25 years even though production of the two metals has been increasing by only a few percentage points per year.

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California company ships first electric standing vehicles to Nigeria

Electric vehicle manufacturer T3 Motion will be shipping out the first batch of its Electric Standing Vehicles to Nigeria, opening the doors for the company’s expansion in the African continent. The shipment contains the first 16 units of a reported 126 vehicles that were ordered in the country. "This shipment is a milestone that will open the door for future opportunities as we fuel our expanse throughout the African continent," said Ki Nam, T3 chief executive.

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Vermont college offers 42-unit renewables, ecological design course

Undergraduates of Green Mountain College in Vermont can avail of a full-fledged 42-credit major in renewable energy and ecological design starting in the fall 2012 semester. Green Mountain College, an environmental liberal arts college, has already been offering a “REED” certificate program for over three years now, where they explored the potential of renewable energy systems and ecological design principles.

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Indonesian city’s water utility adopts advanced metering

A city in East Java, Indonesia tapped Itron to install advanced metering technology which is expected to monitor its distribution network and improve water resource management. The new metering systems for PDAM Malang in Malang City will help reduce non-revenue water through real-time data logging and pressure detection on each meter. Installation is expected to be done in May.

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Outlook bleak for mature renewable energy markets in 2012

Despite reaching record levels of new investment in 2011, the global renewable energy market can expect some difficulty this year, particularly in developed markets, according to Ernst & Young’s latest quarterly Country Attractiveness Indices report. The Eurozone debt crisis continues to stifle renewable energy investment in the region, and governments are scaling back their ambitions for the sector.

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Energy recovered from aircraft’s landing gear can power taxiing

A team of engineers from the University of Lincoln in England have confirmed the feasibility of aircraft generating electricity through their landing gear. The wheel rotation of the landing gear, instead of the jet engines, could be used to power the aircraft’s taxiing to and from airport buildings, to save on fuel. A plane’s braking system produces some energy during landing, which is wasted as heat produced by friction in the aircraft's disc brakes.

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