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With all the competition lately around the Hyperloop, it comes as no surprise that a new patent combines Hyperloop technology with space travel
The post New Patent Merges Hyperloop with Space Technology for Quite a Ride (w. Video) appeared first on Gas 2.
Taking a page from the corporate renewable energy purchasing trend, Squeaky aims to help UK small businesses make the move from dirty electricity sources to 'squeaky clean' ones, at no additional cost
UK Startup Squeaky Connects Small Businesses To “100% Renewable British Electricity” was originally published on CleanTechnica.
The apparel manufacturing industry in the United States employed about 89,588 people in 2014; which in retrospect seems quite miniscule for being the largest global apparel market. However, one must remember that even though the majority of these apparel conglomerates are American based, many of them have their manufacturing plants in Asia. In 2015, the United States imported close to 88 billion U.S. dollars worth of apparel.
* Cotton is grown in 85 countries and exported by 55.
* China is the largest producer of cotton but uses most of its production at home.
* The US is the second largest cotton producer and by far the largest exporter in the world and regularly ships 40 to 60% of its yield abroad.
* As the largest exporter, the US currently accounts for more than 50% of the world¹s exported cotton.
* From 1995 to 2001, 78% of the US subsidies for cotton went to only 10% of the cotton farmers‹about 2000 farmers.
Fiber Selection: Understanding the Impact of Different Fibers is the First Step in Designing Environmentally Responsible Apparel
Ecofiber selection can make a big difference in lowering the environmental footprint of a garment. There are excellent alternatives for nearly every important fiber type.
The New York Times is currently engaged in one of its most ambitious projects: Removing a sitting president from office. In fact, Times columnist Nicolas Kristof even said as much in a recent article titled “How Can We Get Rid of Trump?”
A little less than seven years ago, the climate scientist Michael Mann ambled into his office at Penn State University with a wedge of mail tucked under his arm. As he tore into one of the envelopes, which was hand-addressed to him, white powder tumbled from the folds of the letter. Mann recoiled from the grainy plume and rushed to the bathroom to scrub his hands.
H&M’s move toward sustainability hasn’t come without setbacks, including a major scandal in 2010 that found some of H&M’s ‘organic’ cotton may have been contaminated with genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Thanks to a robust community partnership – a collaboration of farmers, chefs, school district officials, parents, teachers and businesses – the East Bay Area district took the first step to show what’s possible, serving made-from-scratch organic breakfasts and lunches to 1,200 students and teachers at two schools Jan. 30-Feb.
The Justice Department just got a new boss: Jeff Sessions. He is raising alarms in the civil rights community. The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is concerned about his “record of hostility” toward the Voting Rights Act and the enforcement of civil rights.
Late last year, researchshowed life expectancy has declined in the U.S. for the first time in two decades, leaving researchers searching for clues as to the cause.
The first few weeks of Donald Trump’s presidency has seen an amazing explosion of mobilizing to oppose him and his administration on oh-so-many levels. And that has been heartening.
But it is not enough.
Miner and commodities trader Glencore (LON:GLEN) produced some stellar results on Thursday and the Switzerland-based company also provided a positive outlook for 2017, particularly for its base metals business.
Glencore is the world's number four copper producer and top 3 zinc supplier and its clout on base metals markets is only amplified by its trading arm.
Last year Glencore's metals and minerals division recorded revenues of $66.3 billion with 'marketing activities' contributing $42.1 billion of the total.
The Baar-HQed company's 'industrial activities' revenue jumped 25% last year thanks to better fundamentals and rising metal prices which it expects to continue in 2017.
Here are some highlights from Glencore's outlook:Copper
Near-term demand prospects appear positive. A political transition year in China should ensure continued positive fundamentals while the actual and looming infrastructure programs in Japan and North America should start to lend support to non-Chinese consuming regions.
Supply-side fundamentals also improved markedly during the year. Despite some scaremongering, the “wall of supply” failed to emerge.
The stresses induced by 18 months of low pricing and related actions to enhance cash flows are only just starting to manifest themselves
New supply growth from Peru was almost fully offset by production decreases in Chile and elsewhere, and continued shutdowns in the African copper belt. Indeed, the copper market appears to be reverting to form, with an unusually low volume of mine disruptions seen in H1 2016, but increasing in the second half of the year.
The stresses induced by 18 months of low pricing and related actions to enhance cash flows are only just starting to manifest themselves.
The prospect of demand growth across Asia, Europe and the US, as well as the likelihood of difficult labour contract negotiations at some of the industry’s major mines over the coming year, suggest that pricing risks lie to the upside in 2017.Nickel
We estimate global stainless production in 2016 at over 45 million tonnes, up over 7% on the prior year, including over 24 million tonnes from China. Globally 300S austenitic production totalled over 25 million tonnes which is a 10% increase versus 2015.
Developments in non-stainless remain mixed, with special steel producers reporting challenging conditions primarily due to continued oil and gas weakness, whilst demand from the critical alloys industry and battery sector remains robust.
Overall we estimate primary nickel demand in 2016 of 2.05 million tonnes, representing an ~8% increase versus 2015.
Nickel supply continued to fall in 2016 with further shutdowns (BCL, Tati, Votorantim, Mirabella), and lower nickel unit exports (in ore) from the Philippines all driving a fall in projected nickel output to approximately 1.95 million tonnes of nickel, down 2% versus 2015.
Consequently the market entered its first material deficit since 2010 enabling global inventories to fall by around 100,000 tonnes. Whilst inventories remain elevated, the outlook is for continued deficits and further draws in primary nickel inventories as demand remains strong. Supply increases relate to Indonesia exporting more nickel units in nickel pig iron, with production elsewhere continuing to flat-line or even fall.Zinc and Lead
The widely anticipated zinc mining output reduction materialised and resulted in significantly tighter physical market conditions, particularly for zinc concentrate. Confirmation of decreasing supply, in combination with better than anticipated demand conditions driven by the recovery of the Chinese real estate and global automotive market, has resulted in destocking of both zinc concentrates and metal during the year and a higher corresponding LME price.
The widely anticipated zinc mining output reduction materialised and resulted in significantly tighter physical market conditions, particularly for zinc concentrate
2016 Chinese zinc mine production was similar to 2015, despite the incentive of a higher SHFE zinc metal price, and a reduction in zinc mine production from the rest of the world (“ROW”) of around 900kmtu (10.8%). Consequently, realised Benchmark TCs reduced by $32/dmt ($243 to $211) while average spot TCs were down by $99/dmt ($201 to $102).
The tightness in zinc concentrates is yet to impact Chinese zinc metal production, even though Chinese concentrate imports were down by 640kmtu and domestic mine production was flat year-over-year. Chinese smelters reported similar production as in 2015, which is attributed to destocking of concentrates stock built up in prior years. ROW zinc metal production was down by 244kmtu compared to prior year.
ROW zinc metal continues to be shipped to China, following the trend of the last few years. Metal imports into China were stable year on year, causing further inventory drawdowns from LME exchanges (stocks down from 463kt to 428kt), while SHFE (199kt to 153kt) and Shanghai Metal Market stocks have also been drawn to cover the needs of the Chinese physical market. Published non-exchange stocks in China have also reduced by a further 50-80kt. Real estate and infrastructure end markets in China are performing better than expected, supported by Chinese government actions in H1 2016, while the automotive market continues to show strong growth both in China and ROW.
The lead supply side trend is similar, given that it is generally a by-product of zinc. Lead benchmark TCs were down by $22.50/dmt ($170 versus $192.50), while spot was down by $60/dmt ($117 versus $177) compared to 2015 averages. Chinese lead concentrates imports were also down by 24% year over year.
Going forward, we expect tight zinc concentrates supply to translate into lower metal production in 2017, which should cause further inventory drawdowns and provide support to the metal price.
The post Glencore sees zinc, nickel, copper price rally continuing appeared first on MINING.com.
In a press release, the company said that oil prices are so low that it’s simply not profitable to dig up and process the 3.5 billion barrels of fuel buried in one of Canada’s highest-quality deposits of oil sands. That’s a huge amount, as much as the entire petroleum consumption of the United States for six months.
Exxon has long resisted calls to erase these reserves from its books, insisting that it would dig up the tar sands someday, according to Inside Climate News. When a company erases an investment off the books, it’s effectively saying that “We bought something that’s now worthless.” This isn’t an easy thing to admit.
But plenty of companies are fessing up. Last week, ConocoPhillips wiped a billion barrels of oil sands off its books; in November, Norway’s Statoil said it was getting out of the Canadian oil sands business; and in 2015, Royal Dutch Shell fled another big oil sands project, which knocked a $2 billion dent in its bottom line. All told, oil companies have “delayed or canceled at least 64 projects in Alberta’s oil sands” since 2014.
What’s behind all this? Low oil prices. In other words, the market is convincing companies to keep these fossil fuels in the ground. Add climate regulations on top of that, and it could be the death of tar-sands development.
This story was originally published by Grist with the headline Exxon just decided to keep a big chunk of its tar sands in the ground. on Feb 23, 2017.
Utilities are searching for standardized microgrid models that allow both end users and the wider grid to benefit.
On the Tibetan Plateau in eastern China, 4 million solar panels silently soak up the sun as part of the Longyangxia Dam Solar Park. It’s the largest solar farm in the world, spreading over 10 square miles of the high desert landscape.
The complex sprung into existence in 2013 and has been rapidly expanding ever since. Satellite imagery curated by NASA’s Earth Observatory chronicles its growth from a cluster of panels to a sprawling solar farm that looks like a giant, angular thought bubble as of January 2017.
Unlike the world’s largest ball of twine, it’s more than just a roadside attraction. The installation currently has the capacity to generate 850 megawatts of electricity, or enough to power roughly 140,000 U.S. homes.
The Longyangxia Dam Solar Park is one piece of the massive renewable energy revolution taking place in China. The country invested $103 billion into renewables in 2015, the last year with data available. That helped the world set a renewable investment high water mark of $286 billion.
According to Greenpeace’s Energydesk, preliminary 2016 data show China installed the equivalent of one and a half soccer fields of solar panels every hour. That puts the country on track to meet its 2020 renewable goals sometime in 2018.
The renewables targets line up with China’s international climate commitments. The government previously announced it would lower the carbon intensity of its economy 40-45 percent below 2005 levels. Under the Paris Agreement, China has pledged to peak its carbon dioxide emissions by 2030.
Looking ahead, the government announced in early January that it plans to spend $361 billion on renewable power generation from now through 2020. The influx of cash is expected to help China produce a total of 110 gigawatts of solar power and 210 gigawatts of wind power by 2020.
The increase in investment coincides with a 40 percent drop in the cost of installing utility-scale solar in China since 2010. Solar is expected to become even cheaper in the coming years, further creating more bang for China’s buck (or yuan, as the case may be).
Despite the growth in capacity, China has struggled to balance demand and production. An economic slowdown has caused some solar and wind farms to sit idle or produce energy that can’t be used. Local governments and strong coal interests also present obstacles to China’s transition from the world’s biggest carbon polluter to an economy largely powered by clean energy.
China continues to see its emissions rise due largely to heavy coal use, which will increase the risks associated with climate change. The Longyangxia Dam Solar Park is a step toward ensuring China has the capacity to change that.
This story was originally published by Grist with the headline Here’s what the world’s biggest solar farm looks like from space on Feb 23, 2017.