According to some numbers crunched by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), weight ratios in modern cars are creating a giant problem with overall efficiency. Car weights are climbing, but passenger loads aren't, and this is the truly limiting factor when it comes to energy efficiency.
General Motors has added two more outlets to its global land-fill free initiative – the Rayong engine plant in Thailand and Cheonga proving ground in Korea. This brings the total to 33 facilities in Asia, 45 in North America and 22 in Europe that recycle, reuse or convert to energy all their waste.
General Motors has signed on to the Ceres "Climate Declaration," which is dedicated to stopping – and therefore acknowledges – climate change. While other major corporations like Starbucks, Ikea, Intel and eBay also signed on, GM is the only automaker so far to do so.
LaFontaine Automotive Group, a dealership based in Dexter, MI, hired two firms to upgrade its facility for energy efficiency and cost savings – and as a method to market its environmentally responsible credentials. GridNavigator, a provider of an intelligent energy management system, and Bloom General Contracting, a construction management firm, have a partnership to promote green buildings to GM dealerships throughout the US. LaFontaine is their first joint customer.
For automakers pursuing sustainability initiatives – things like powering plants with solar panels and recycling existing car components – General Motors is stepping it up a notch. GM is working with a Detroit nonprofit group to turn leftover auto materials into warm coats and sleeping bags for the area's houseless.
Generating electricity through energy sources other than coal and nuclear is being debated in legislatures and board rooms around the world. In addition to natural gas, wind, solar and geothermal, there's one zero-emission energy source that we really don't hear much about: prisoner power. But it's real.
There's a lot of energy talk around here, but some of the most fun is about the future and thinking about the innovations that may forever change our perception of energy production. For example, what about solar energy beamed in from the moon? Want something a little more down-to-earth? Check out these sweating plants that could be the key to a cleaner future.
Where can an automaker make a difference? Just by building greener cars? By having green dealerships? Wait, it can also have green training facilities! That's the tack that Jaguar Land Rover, not known for fuel efficient vehicles, is taking. Jaguar Land Rover's new training facilities in Warwick, England occupy over 4,000 m2, including a workshop for all hands-on training. There are also 16 classrooms, which are large enough to house a vehicle for better training. The green part comes from the b
General Motors yesterday pledged to cut the carbon dioxide emissions from its manufacturing plants in North America by forty percent over the next three years. The reduction amounts to 4.5 million metric tonnes of CO2. This is part of GM's participation in the EPA Climate Leaders program which brings together business and government to find ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Tom and Ray Magliozzi, who host of the popular NPR program Car Talk as "Click and Clack", address the controversial issue of ethanol efficacy. According to a listener's letter,131,000 British thermal units (BTU) are needed to produce a gallon of ethanol. However, that gallon only produces 77,000 BTU of energy. The listener wonders if the 54,000 BTU shortfall per gallon is truly cost-effective compared to gasoline.