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Archive for the ‘sustainability’ category

Feb 23, 2024

A Kenyan start-up turns plastic waste into solar-powered freezers

Posted by in category: sustainability

A Kenyan company is proving the saying: “one person’s waste is another person’s treasure,” still rings true.

On a February morning, a group of women on a Mombasa beach pick up plastic waste that will serve to build freezers.

The waste is sold to company Kuza Freezer where employees first break it down into pellets before moulding it into cold storage units.

Feb 22, 2024

Aqueous Metal-Ion Batteries: The Future of Safe and Sustainable Energy Storage

Posted by in categories: energy, health, sustainability

How can water-based batteries help improve lithium-ion energy storage and technology? This is what a series of studies published in Advanced Materials, Small Structures, Energy Storage Materials, and Energy & Environmental Science hopes to address as a team of international researchers led by Liaoning University in China have developed recyclable, aqueous-based batteries that won’t succumb to combustion or explosion. This study holds the potential to help researchers develop safer and more efficient water-based energy storage technologies for a cleaner future.

While lithium-ion batteries have proven reliable, they pose safety risks due to the organic electrolytes responsible for creating the electrical charge, which can lead to them catching fire or exploding, limiting their development for large-scale usage. To solve this problem, the researchers used water for driving the electric current between the battery’s terminals, nearly eliminating the chance for a safety hazard.

“Addressing end-of-life disposal challenges that consumers, industry and governments globally face with current energy storage technology, our batteries can be safely disassembled, and the materials can be reused or recycled,” said Dr. Tianyi Ma, who is a team member and a professor in the STEM | School of Science at RMIT University. “We use materials such as magnesium and zinc that are abundant in nature, inexpensive and less toxic than alternatives used in other kinds of batteries, which helps to lower manufacturing costs and reduces risks to human health and the environment.”

Feb 22, 2024

What the U.S. can learn from Norway when it comes to EV adoption

Posted by in categories: climatology, government, sustainability

Norway boasts the highest electric vehicle adoption rate in the world. Some 82% of new car sales were EVs in Norway in 2023, according to the Norwegian Road Federation (OFV). In comparison, 7.6% of new car sales were electric in the U.S. last year, according to Kelley Blue Book estimates. In the world’s largest auto market, China, 24% of new car sales were EVs in 2023, according to the China Passenger Car Association.

“Our goal is that all new cars by 2025 will be zero-emission vehicles,” said Ragnhild Syrstad, the state secretary of the Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment, “We think we’re going to reach that goal.”

The Norwegian government started incentivizing the purchase of EVs back in the 1990s with free parking, the use of bus lanes, no tolls and most importantly, no taxes on zero-emission vehicles. But it wasn’t until Tesla and other EV models became available about 10 years ago that sales started to take off, Syrstad said.

Feb 21, 2024

Ex-SpaceX engineers unveil Arc Sport, 570 horsepower electric wakeboat

Posted by in categories: engineering, sustainability, transportation

Discover the Arc Sport, a revolutionary electric wake boat engineered for performance, sustainability, and seamless user experience.


Former SpaceX engineers have unleashed their latest innovation, the Arc Sport, onto the waters, redefining the landscape of wake sports. Combining cutting-edge aerospace engineering with electric vehicle (EV) technology, the Arc Spor t promises an exhilarating experience like no other.

Boasting a massive 226 kWh battery capacity and a robust 570 horsepower (425 kW) motor, this engineering marvel delivers more than double the torque of its gas-powered counterparts.

Continue reading “Ex-SpaceX engineers unveil Arc Sport, 570 horsepower electric wakeboat” »

Feb 21, 2024

BYD is buying back stock to fuel its dominant global expansion with new EVs

Posted by in categories: sustainability, transportation

The world’s EV leader, BYD (OTC: BYDDY), announced a stock buyback plan as it continues expanding into new markets. BYD is pushing into different segments with new luxury EVs and mid-size electric SUVs.

After selling a record 526,409 all-electric vehicles in the fourth quarter of 2023, BYD topped Tesla to become the best-selling EV maker globally.

The automaker’s success was fueled by its lineup of affordable EVs like the Dolphin, Atto 3 (Yuan Plus in China), and Seal. However, BYD is quickly expanding into new segments.

Feb 20, 2024

Chemists Decipher Reaction Process that could Improve Lithium-Sulfur Batteries

Posted by in categories: chemistry, energy, sustainability

A combination of battery technology and catalysis opens new avenues for cheap, high-capacity batteries. Lithium-sulfur batteries can potentially store five to 10 times more energy than current state-of-the-art lithium-ion batteries at much lower cost. Current lithium-ion batteries use cobalt oxide as the cathode, an expensive mineral mined in ways that harm people and the environment. Lithium-sulfur batteries replace cobalt oxide with sulfur, which is abundant and cheap, costing less than one-hundredth the price of cobalt.

But there’s a catch: Chemical reactions, particularly the sulfur reduction reaction, are very complex and not well understood, and undesired side reactions could end the batteries’ lives well before those of traditional batteries.

Now, researchers led by UCLA chemists Xiangfeng Duan and Philippe Sautet have deciphered the key pathways of this reaction.

Feb 20, 2024

Rivian (RIVN) confirms more affordable R2 electric SUV will launch in Europe

Posted by in categories: sustainability, transportation

With less than three weeks until the R2 is finally unveiled, Rivian (RIVN) confirmed it will bring the more affordable electric SUV to Europe.

After opening the R2 website last week, Rivian gave us our first look at the new EV during a teaser video.

The shadowy image shows a smaller-looking version of the R1S, aligning with what we’ve seen in the past. A patent filed by Rivian last month showed a more compact electric SUV with slightly smaller headlights and a rear quarter panel.

Feb 20, 2024

This startup’s tech turns CO2 into seashell dust

Posted by in categories: climatology, sustainability

UCLA spinout Equatic has developed a carbon removal technology it believes can help the world meet its climate change goals — by converting CO2 in the ocean into seashell dust.

The challenge: To prevent the worst predicted effects of climate change, experts say we need to not only slash our carbon emissions, but also remove and permanently store some of the CO2 that’s already been released.

The ocean does this naturally: it already absorbs about 31% of human-made carbon emissions, but there’s a limit to the amount of CO2 that seawater can absorb before it starts to release the carbon back into the atmosphere. Absorbing CO2 from the air also causes ocean acidification, resulting in further environmental damage.

Feb 20, 2024

Cactus ransomware claim to steal 1.5TB of Schneider Electric data

Posted by in categories: business, cybercrime/malcode, robotics/AI, sustainability

The Cactus ransomware gang claims they stole 1.5TB of data from Schneider Electric after breaching the company’s network last month.

25MB of allegedly stolen were also leaked on the operation’s dark web leak site today as proof of the threat actor’s claims, together with snapshots showing several American citizens’ passports and non-disclosure agreement document scans.

As BleepingComputer first reported, the ransomware group gained access to the energy management and automation giant’s Sustainability Business division on January 17th.

Feb 19, 2024

Sun Bear Solar Farm Will Be Eight Miles Long, One Mile Wide, And Have Two Million Solar Panels

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

Sun Bear, an enormous solar and battery storage installation in the Four Corners region of Colorado, will have more than two million solar panels spread across 5,500 acres of land belonging to the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, part of the Weenuche Band of the Ute Nation. The primary developer is the Canigou Group, which styles itself as a global leader in renewable energy. “We are active throughout Europe, Australia and North America where we work with partners at the local level to provide a holistic solution,” it says on its website. The Sun Bear facility will cost up to $1.5 billion and produce peak power of 975 MW. There is no information currently available about the size of the battery storage system or who will supply the batteries for it.

There are several reasons why the site in southwest Colorado, which borders New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah, was chosen for this large scale solar project. Carigou Group says “Sun Bear is well positioned for harnessing the sun with its large unobstructed sky, high annual solar irradiance, and low seasonal variability. The site is located close to a confluence of transmission systems which provide access to customers via both transmission and distribution interconnection.”

Continue reading “Sun Bear Solar Farm Will Be Eight Miles Long, One Mile Wide, And Have Two Million Solar Panels” »

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