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Green Technology

Green Technology

How Energy Deregulation and Privatization Could Impact Renewable Energy

October 14, 2019
energy deregulation

Many recent news stories discuss how societies must become more dependent on renewable energy. Relying on fossil fuels is not sustainable, but investing in renewables helps ensure our planet’s future. However, evidence suggests that energy deregulation and privatization could both impact these resources.

Energy deregulation attempts to resist energy company monopolies by increasing the number of competitors in the marketplace. The process functions with a reverse auction, whereby energy providers aim to sell their offerings at the lowest possible rate. The energy goes through the existing infrastructure. The utility companies that own it transmit the power to customers, but they don’t set the prices paid.

Privatization occurs when the responsibility of supplying energy to the people who need it transfers from public-funded ventures, such as those operated by the government, to privately held companies. Let’s take a look at how deregulation and privatization in the energy market could influence renewable energy.

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Green Technology

Advantages of Hydropower for Energy Generation

September 27, 2019
advantages of hydropower

People are increasingly concerned about finding renewable energy sources to meet the world’s needs. They know that fossil fuels are no longer realistic to depend on, especially as we become more aware of the growing threats associated with climate change.

Hydropower is one method of energy generation that offers many benefits. This option involves capturing the energy generated by water moving downstream, and the water cycle as a whole. The volume of the flowing water and the change in elevation as water flows downward are two things that impact the energy generated by hydropower.

In some cases, the water’s movement powers a turbine at a hydropower plant. Systems also exist that store water and release it as needed to generate energy. In the United States, hydropower is the country’s largest single renewable energy source for electricity.

Here are some of the perks that hydropower offers:

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Green Technology

The Impact of Future Technology in Emergency Management

September 6, 2019
future technology in emergency management

With the reality of climate change visible on weather reports, we as a society must prepare ourselves for more severe weather. Those on the East and Southern coasts brace themselves for hurricanes and floods, while the West battles wildfire and drought. In an emergency when seconds count, technology can streamline evacuation efforts, reunite families and transport needed supplies to survivors.

What emerging technologies will have the most significant influence on emergency management? How can we use what we possess currently to improve response times? And can advances in software and hardware help prevent future disasters?

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Green Technology

What Technology Predicting Natural Disasters Means for Disaster Preparedness

September 2, 2019
technology predicting natural disasters

Natural disasters are becoming more prevalent and more destructive with each passing year, thanks to climate change and the rising global temperature. Hurricanes are getting larger and more powerful. Droughts are lasting longer, which encourages both water scarcity and wildfires. There are many other disasters we don’t hear about on the news unless they impact human life. New technology may be able to predict these events more accurately than ever before. What does this new predictive technology mean for disaster preparedness?

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Green Technology

Artificial Intelligence and Its Environmental Costs

July 22, 2019
artificial intelligence environment

Artificial intelligence is an adaptable technology capable of many different functions. It seems like an inherently helpful tool, whether we’re looking at its role in decision-making, research or planning. At worst, AI takes the form of an evil robot intent on destruction, bad for humans but great for ticket sales.

The movies make it seem like AI is only threatening when it has a mind of its own, but this technology has negative consequences that aren’t as obvious. The relationship between artificial intelligence and the environment is an example of how these systems have their share of risks beyond their benefits.

That’s not to say that artificial intelligence doesn’t have value for environmental organizations. It has a variety of advantages for conservation efforts, such as aiding in the assessment of animal populations and identifying trafficked wildlife. AI also enables companies to reduce their energy consumption.

In short, artificial intelligence is a useful technology that has made the world a better place to live. However, these same systems that have improved the planet have also damaged it. AI represents an incredible step forward, but that progress has come at a cost that is just as crucial to acknowledge.

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Green Technology

Humanitarian Engineering Bringing Renewable Energy to Disaster-Hit Communities

July 18, 2019

Public attention may fade, but the effects of a natural disaster can linger long after camera crews have left. The lasting consequences of Hurricane Maria on the island of Puerto Rico serve as a fitting example of this phenomenon. After the hurricane severely compromised their power grid, the island’s infrastructure fell apart, and entire towns went without electricity for almost a year.

In the wake of the destruction, families had to depend on backup generators, navigating a dangerous landscape of leaning power poles, fallen trees and other debris. Fortunately, humanitarian engineering has helped manage the energy needs of affected areas in the aftermath of many natural disasters.

The executive director and co-founder of Empowered by Light, Moira Hanes, sees renewable energy as the solution. Her nonprofit partnered with the Las Vegas Fire Department to install solar hubs at firehouses across Puerto Rico. The solar and construction companies Sunrun and Aireko also participated.

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Green Technology

Women in Engineering Continuing to Gain Renown in the Field

May 27, 2019
women in engineering

Women aren’t a new occurrence in engineering, but until recently the field has been primarily dominated by men. In today’s world, even in the states that have the highest number of female graduates with engineering degrees, women still only make up, at most, 22% of graduates and 14% of working engineers.

That hasn’t stopped these amazing women from making some astonishing discoveries, though. Let’s take a closer look at the advances that women are making in engineering and how schools are trying to get more girls interested in the field.

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Green Technology

How Green Buildings Will Change Our Architectural Landscape

May 13, 2019
green buildings

Decades ago, you didn’t hear much talk about global warming or saving the planet. It was all about building bigger and better. Studies now show construction — everything from sourcing materials to putting them together — is responsible for 23 percent of air pollution, 40 percent of water pollution and 50 percent of landfill waste.

Now, people are more aware of the Earth’s dwindling resources and are taking steps to implement green initiatives.

This growing awareness — along with sustainability becoming more profitable and desirable in the construction market — has led to a demand for more building options. In fact, experts say green building is the fastest growing industry worldwide.

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Green Technology

What Green Healthcare Means for Medical Manufacturing

April 29, 2019
green healthcare

The term, “green healthcare,” refers to the incorporation of eco-conscious practices in healthcare delivery. Industry professionals have seen the value in these improvements, as they reduce their ecological footprint, save money and help educate members of the public on environmental stewardship.

As an example of the updates, the use of biodegradable cutlery in hospital cafeterias results in less waste. Safe cleaning agents, fewer pesticides and sustainable renovations are all a part of the green healthcare movement. In short, it’s an effort to enhance the well-being of patients while restoring the environment.

Beyond the benefits of the transition, it’ll have a transformative effect on many areas of the industry. Medical manufacturing will need to change, given the massive volume of waste from the disposal of medical supplies. Though it’s an issue of patient safety, it represents a significant problem for sustainability.

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