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We here at Sustainable Hosting are keenly tracking the latest Green IT trends in technology and news. We aim to provide a point of referece for making sustainable decisions and becoming more aware of green practices. Follow us on Twitter @SustainableHost

Moore's Law is so amazing, just when we thought that we would reach the end of our current technology, so new technology steps up to take it's place.

via [matternetwork.com] By Timothy B. Hurst of EarthandIndustry.com

Computer Chips

There have been several quiet revolutions in the history of the computer chip industry, but as news filtered out of the scientific world of materials science this summer, we learned that we may just be on the cusp of a revolution that could not only have a dramatic effect on superconducter speed, it could make silicon wafers a thing of the past.

Physicists at DOE’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University have confirmed the existence of a type of material that could one day provide dramatically faster, more efficient computer chips. And some companies are betting that bismuth telluride (Bi2Te3) could even become the bedrock of an entirely new kind of computing industry — one based on “spintronics“. Spintronic devices use the spin, rather than the charge, of materials to store information.

Theoretical and experimental physicists led by Yulin Chen and Zhi-Xun Shen at the Stanford Institute for Materials & Energy Science tested the behavior of electrons in the compound bismuth telluride. The results, published in June at Science Express, show a clear signature of a material that enables the free flow of electrons across its surface with no loss of energy.

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This could really help our new clean hydrogen economy get going for sure!

via [hydrogencarsnow.com]

Hydrogen Fuel Cells In the movie “What About Bob?” Bill Murray talked about taking “baby steps.” An ancient Chinese proverb says, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” At the upcoming Consumer Electronic Show in Las Vegas, NV, Horizon will unveil its HydroFill home hydrogen fueling device which may mean we are a step away from hydrogen car commercialization.

The HydroFill, when it becomes commercial is expected to be able to refuel hydrogen cars in the privacy of one’s own home. Now, I’ve talked about home hydrogen fueling stations many times in the past and this product may be just what the industry needs to jumpstart the chicken-or-the-egg syndrome when it comes to which will be built first, the cars or the fueling stations.

The Horizon Hydrofill can run off AC at night when the electricity rates are the lowest, electrolyze water into hydrogen and oxygen and refill their metal hydride canisters. The next day the hydrogen fuel cell car or smaller device can be refueled from the canister.

The Hydrofill may not be introduced commercially in 2010, however as development is ongoing. Horizon is already selling, however, a 20-liter hydrogen storage tank made of aluminum alloy outside and metal hydride inside.

Now, while the HydroFill is a big idea that Horizon is still working on, this same company has decided to start a bit smaller and offer a commercial line of micro-fuel cell power packs for recharging small electronic devices such a lighting products, USB devices and cell phones.

In summer 2009, I had talked about how Horizon had created the fuel cell for the economical Riversimple fuel cell city car. An affordable Riversimple plus Hydrofill home fueling station may be the ticket to sooner rather than later introduction of hydrogen cars and infrastructure into the marketplace.

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Some enterprising folks down in Austrial have started the Carbon Trade with a new carbon sequestration forest. Sweet!

via [cnn.com]

ECO2 Forests Inc. (PINKSHEETS: ECOF), an international sustainable forestry company focused on reforestation and carbon sequestration projects, has reached a multi-million dollar agreement for the sale of carbon credits created through the commencement of its Global Forestry projects.

Kiri TreeECO2 has entered into contract with CarbonX Trade, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Lakewood, CO based Green Ventures Future Fund, for the sale of all generated carbon credits through the first seven years of planting from the company's recently announced Vanuatu venture and its ongoing projects in the Eastern states of Australia where the planting of 150,000 initial Kiri trees has been completed creating approximately 375,000 carbon credits at an initial price of $10.00us per credit from these trees. Green Ventures Future Fund ("Green Ventures") will begin making payments for those carbon credits over a 12 month period beginning in April of 2010 creating ongoing cash flow for ECO2 while allowing the company to incrementally build income. An additional 150,000 trees are on schedule to be planted by the end of Q1 2010 in Vanuatu, following the anticipated land closing in mid-January, with their initial payments then commencing 90 days after completion. ECO2 plans to have a minimum of 3 million trees planted by the end of the seven year cycle per the contract with Green Ventures.

Other key components of the contract with the buyer include the first right of refusal to carbon credits from any future forestation projects initiated by ECO2 during the total ten year contract period; a purchase price based upon the 90 day trailing average price of the European Emissions Trading Scheme, less a 20% discount in price, a five percent increase per year in the price of each carbon credit with a base starting price of $10.00us.

ECO2's Global Forestry Plan intends to deliver large scale reforestation projects with a positive environmental and economic impact for the global environment. The high level of carbon sequestration is a naturally occurring event of the Kiri Tree, however improvements to the strains developed over the last 20 years sees improved levels of carbon dioxide absorption.

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via [documentmanagementnews.com]

Despite the Copenhagen climate change conference not coming up with the goods, there will be continued growth in green IT investment, says investment bank Jefferies.

Jefferies' CleanTech investor survey, based on responses among over 200 participating institutional investors, found that government subsidies and a general recovery of the credit and broader financial markets were the most important drivers for green IT growth - not a strong agreement at Copenhagen on global CO2 emission cuts.

Investors are confident that government subsidies are likely to remain the same or increase. As a result, the investment community is positive in their outlook towards the broader clean technology sector.

Europe is seen as leading the pack ahead of the US and Asia in terms of driving green IT innovation, said survey respondents.

Bruce Huber, head of Jefferies' European CleanTech investment banking group, said, "Europe continues to be perceived as a major innovation hub for CleanTech, which may be why continued incentive plans at the country level that nurtured the European CleanTech industry are seen as more crucial to investment and continued growth than the outcome at Copenhagen."

He said, "What is clear is that both local government incentives and transnational policies aimed at putting the brakes on climate change are fundamental to the continued growth of the CleanTech industry."

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Here is some great insight as the what may come in the coming years.

via [ctoedge.com] Written by Julius Neudorfer

As we wrap up the end of the first decade of the new millennium, I felt compelled to think about what the first year of the next decade might bring.

First, a quick look back. 1999 was a wild time for IT. Y2K anticipation and remediation spelled good economic times for almost anyone who had anything to do with computers. After it was over, the lights were still on and there was still money in the bank statements. Everyone breathed a sigh of relief, but many wanted to know if it was all an overblown threat ... and some Y2K consultants started driving cabs in 2000. Some data centers were still being designed for 35-50 watts per SF, with 500-1000 watts per rack. The hot aisle-cold aisle concept was not yet a commonly accepted standard practice.

2001 brought a sobering new reality to the U.S. and the world. It affected people in a way not seen since Pearl Harbor in 1941. For the government and IT, there was recognition that “cyber security” had a new importance. It was no longer just hackers seeing if they could deface the Washington Post for kicks.

In 2002, the U.S. and most of the world’s economies were still reeling and IT suffered. By the end of 2003, we began to return to the new “normal.” IT and the U.S. economy were somewhat back and on the upswing.

By 2003, average density was 50-75 watts per SF, racks 1-2 KW.

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Man this is sweet tennis center.  I would totaly play tennis in this highrise.

via [inhabitat.org] by Bridgette Meinhold
locally sourced materials, local materials, wood, david tajchman, wooden structure, tenniscalator, tennis, tennis center, tennis pavilion, daylighting

The building you see above may look like a gigantic piece of shredded wheat, but it’s actually a (very) non-traditional tennis complex for Vaxjo, Sweden! David Tajchman, a Paris-based firm, designed the aptly named Tennicalator to be made out of locally sourced wood as part of an international design competition, but the woven facade isn’t the only cool thing about it. Since the area and neighboring buildings have a strong connection with the surrounding nature, David Tajchman  decided to take the Tenniscalator vertical instead of horizontal, leaving the remaining land for beautiful gardens and manicured grounds.

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I love LEDs. These babys are going to be everywhere.

via [goodcleantech.com]

Lighting Examples

It seems like compact fluorescent bulbs just came on the scene, and already there's a new sheriff in town. LEDs are proving they can do a better job at illuminating while using even less energy. Check out the picture at left: on top is a parking lot for Sarasota Memorial, the second-largest public hospital in Florida, as lit by 250-watt metal halide cobra head lights. Below that is the same lot lit by 75-watt EvoLucia-brand LED cobra head lights. The new lights will use 67 percent less electricity and do a much better job of illumination.

"The new LED lamps are more cost-efficient, but more than that, they will improve the security of our campus by providing longer-lasting coverage and cleaner, whiter lighting for improved visibility at night," said Sarasota Memorial Public Safety Director Mickey Watson. "Our older lights required considerably more maintenance and subsequent costs for replacement parts." The new LEDs should run for 12 years before needing replacement.

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Here are some sweet stories from 2009!

via [ecogeek.org] Written by Megan Treacy

top-10-2009
2010 is quickly approaching and we can only hope that it holds even more innovations that will benefit the world we live in.  As we move forward, here's a look back at the stories you clicked on most during the past year.  From gadgets to urine fuel, these are the top ten.

10.  Power-Generating Shock Absorber is Surprisingly Strong A bumpy road could become an asset if these electricity-generating shock absorbers make it to our cars and trucks.

9.    Lithium Supply Fears are Total B.S. Don't let the media frenzy fool you:  why a lithium-crisis is not around the corner.

8.    World's First Floating Wind Turbine Switches On Floating wind turbines could be installed in deep water, keeping them out of coastal views and shipping lanes.

7.    New York State Agencies Switching from Bottled to Tap Another government entity realizes the environmental benefits of tap water over bottled water.

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In addition to carbon emissions, water will be a key point of contention.  If the US can become a leader in solution providing, we all win!

via [greenbiz.com]

World Water Tap

Oakland, CA — In-ground soil moisture sensors, a system to recover clean water from oil and natural gas production, and an online dashboard that analyzes investor risk that from changes in global watersheds were among the finalists named for this year’s Imagine H2O Prize. This year’s prize — the inaugural global competition — rewards business plans that offer the greatest promise of breakthroughs in the efficient use and supply of water.

If all of the finalists’ proposed businesses were realized, they would save more than one trillion gallons of water annually.

With more than fifty teams from all over the world submitting entries, “the competition has already exceeded our wildest expectations,” says Brian Matthay, the competition’s program manager. Created to help find sustainable solutions to global water problems through entrepreneurship, the competition offers prizes of $70,000 in cash, business and legal support, and access to a network of partners, customers and financiers to help bring their ideas to market.

“Only a small number of water start-ups receive angel and venture investment each year. Our team did an extensive search to find an impressive number of promising water start-ups looking for support,” says Tamin Pechet, Imagine H2O’s Chairman. “More importantly, the Prize actually inspired some water start-ups to put together their teams and business plans that might not have done so otherwise.”

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Now these are some sweet diggs.

via [inhabitat.com] by Evelyn Lee

Subterranean Hotel, Green Building, Sustainable Building, Green Hotels, Sustainable Hotels, ReardonSmith Architects, Hersham Golf Club, London Green Belt, Green Roofs

This five star hotel is going under – underground that is! Designed by ReardonSmith Architects for a proposed development at Hersham Golf Club in Surrey, London, this new subterranean hotel will pay its ultimate respects to London’s Green Belt by placing all 200+ guest rooms underneath it! The entire scheme is covered with a plush green roof that takes its cue from the surrounding countryside.

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If we can provide better solutions for ranchers to water their herds, we can actually help prevent some of the destruction of our waterways.

via [cleantechnica.com] Written by Susan Kraemer

Solar arrays can provide energy to pump water to watering troughs for cows, improving water quality on remote pastures and saving money too. Farmers can more sustainably manage their pastures if cows are not all clustered around small creeks, eroding the banks.

One example of a worst case scenario is Dick Lester’s Spring Valley Ranch in Cherokee County, Iowa. He had one tiny creek that his cattle were trampling to death, reducing their own water supply.

He needed to pump water 150 feet up the hill to three separate watering troughs so the cows would spread out and not trample the creek’s stream banks, fouling their own drinking water supply and reducing the flow by eroding the stream banks.

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