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As tech entrepreneurs like PROSOL Invest Deutschland (profiled in this post from a few weeks ago) turn to information technology and Big Data to make renewable energy more efficient, IT is remaking water conservation too. A joint research team from universities and business are working together to develop a tool that will use data analysis and sensors to make irrigation and drainage less water intensive. And on the policy front, organizations like the Environmental Defense Fund are advocating for a common approach to water and energy policy. Read on to learn more about how technology is remaking agriculture and how advancements in energy technology can save water too.
In 2011, Microsoft launched its pilot program to install Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) around the Redmond Campus. The move was an effort to create an environment that welcomed increased usage of electric vehicles in the Puget Sound region. Two years later there are now a total of 11 EVSE locations on the Redmond Campus with 18 stations, and adoption has progressed consistently. In the past three months we’ve seen the greatest number of increases per month since the program began. The stations can accommodate both electric cars and scooters, so there are a variety of vehicles that utilize the service.
Is everything we know about renewable energy about to change? SmartPlanet and other outlets are reporting on an innovative renewable energy project led by UCLA researchers that could potentially allow your cell phone to be powered solely through solar energy. Consuming electricity is a daily occurrence in our homes, offices and cars, and we’re just starting to scratch the surface in terms of finding the most efficient ways to produce it. Also this week, a new report shows that 2012 marked an all-time high for renewable energy production in the U.S. Read on to learn more about the ways in which renewable energy can have a positive impact on sustainable practices.
Recently industry and policy leaders gathered in Cape Town, South Africa to address a major environmental challenge facing the continent of Africa: e-waste, the discarded leftovers of electronics. This is an important issue for Africa, as experts in the region have estimated that by 2017, West Africa will generate more e-waste than all of Europe.
The African E-Waste and Refurbishment Standards Conference was attended by e-waste recyclers and refurbishment companies from 10 African countries. The event, sponsored by Microsoft, was organized by TechSoup Global, TechSoup Africa, WorldLoop, and Mico E-Waste Solutions. Participants included international companies such as UNIDO, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo/IBM, the e-Waste Association of South Africa (eWASA) and many others. The day-long event brought together those committed to evolving the state of electronics recycling in Africa, with the goal of assessing issues and problems facing the region as a result of improper disposal, and discussing ways to address them.
As the planet’s population races toward 9 billion by 2050, the only way to meet growing energy needs will be to use energy more efficiently. The good news is that advances in IT are making the prospect of a less energy-intensive future a little brighter, whether it’s using IT solutions and a slick interface to help German consumers get the most from their home’s solar panels or continuing to modernize the electric grid. Read on to learn how a German startup and major U.S. states are relying on innovation—technological and political—to lead the way toward a more energy efficient tomorrow.