Southeast Green - Business depends on the environment and the environment depends on business

Revolutionizing the Future With Graphene-Based Technology

Graphene is one of the newest advances on the forefront of technology. This new space-age material is made up of a single layer of carbon tightly woven together in a honeycomb-shaped hexagon formation. When we say single layer, we mean that the layer of graphene is one layer of atoms, with a height of roughly 0.345 nanometers. 


Net Metering Drives Solar in South Carolina

Why not Georgia?

There is a report coming out of DOE that is supposed to clear up the confusion (mostly promulgated out of Washington, DC) about whether clean technology, and more specifically, renewable energy, such as solar and wind, are good or bad for increasing the resiliency of the electric grid.  As a professional energy engineer with specific utility and non utility solar energy background, let me dispel any doubts.  Distributed solar energy is one of the best things for helping to increase the resiliency of the electric grid for all the following reasons:


Survey says: EPA under Scott Pruitt is less trusted; companies should stay the course

As a regular reader of our work, you received a short poll earlier this week intended to help us gauge your perceptions of the EPA in the wake of Scott Pruitt’s confirmation. American consumers also received this poll.

Our aim here was to put some data and insights behind the advice we’ve been giving via this blog and privately to our clients. That advice, summarized in last week’s blog post, has been: “Stay the course and then change the course.” In other words, you shouldn’t waver from your commitments to the environment and, in fact, you should step them up – consumers expect it, and they’ll continue to put their wallets where their values are. We’ve also been curious ever since Scott Pruitt was named to lead the EPA what that would mean for overall trust in the agency. When he was confirmed last Friday, we decided to find out.


States Will Drive Clean Energy Forward Until the U.S. Leads

2016 is expected to be the hottest year on record and trends on Arctic sea ice and carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere are increasingly alarming. But just as we need it the most, the future of U.S. climate leadership looks grim. As a candidate, Donald Trump said he wanted to “cancel” the historic Paris Climate Agreement and pledged to scrap the ground-breaking Clean Power Plan to cut dangerous power plant pollution. Trump has also claimed—falselythat wind and solar power don’t work “on a large scale.”  

Moving backward on climate and clean energy won’t actually advance Trump’s agenda. The President-elect has made building and repairing U.S. infrastructure a key priority. There’s no better way to build our economy than by putting electricians and plumbers to work retrofitting homes to make them more efficient and employing steelworkers and utility workers to build wind turbines and solar projects. Slowing clean energy will only cost America jobs and undermine our global competitiveness. In fact, clean energy is the ultimate infrastructure project.


Union of Concerned Scientists Answers Questions about Hurricane Matthew and Climate Change

Frequently Asked Questions about Hurricane Matthew and Climate Change

Q: Did climate change cause this hurricane?

A: In general, hurricanes just happen. They need warm water, moist air and converging winds to form. But, a number of studies have found that warmer ocean temperatures are fueling stronger North Atlantic hurricanes. The number of North Atlantic Category 4 and Category 5 hurricanes has roughly doubled since the 1970s. In the case of Matthew, ocean waters were at record high temperatures. The oceans have absorbed most of the extra energy from global warming and the North Atlantic has warmed more than other oceans—0.7°C since the 1980s.


USGBC Empowers Zero Waste Industry: USGBC & USZWBC join forces

USGBC logoThis summer the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) stepped into Zero Waste WE Consciousness with an empowering announcement!

On July 1, 2016, the USGBC issued a LEED Interpretation allowing documentation for a facility certified by the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council (USZWBC) to stand in for several LEED for Building Operations and Maintenance (LEED O+M) prerequisites and credits. The USGBC's aim is to reduce the burden for buildings pursuing both certifications.


Why We Withdrew Funds from Our 401k to Invest in Solar

My 25 year veteran tax accountant looked at me with incredulous eyes when I said I wanted to withdraw $20,000 from my 401k to invest in a solar array for our house. She told me even to withdraw funds simply to be able to invest in another fund rarely pays off, because of the tax consequences. I looked at her and said; “This time I think it will work out for us”. She only shook her head. “As your tax accountant, I advise against it.” 


Avoiding the Red when Going Green


All waste removal service prices are set to increase, but recycling services will offer buyers the most cost-effective and eco-friendly option

Over the past decade, environmentalists have pressured waste collection firms to become more eco-friendly amid increasing concerns about greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. Waste haulers have, in turn, been able to generate more revenue from the emerging recycled material market created from advances and initiatives to “reduce, reuse, recycle.” However, the cost of going green has recently jumped for many waste collection firms, and the added expense has often been passed down the line to buyers.


Let’s make sure the Clean Power Plan provides opportunity for rural, low-income communities

Used under creative commons license from usdagov.This month marks the one-year anniversary of the announcement of the Clean Power Plan, President Obama and the EPA’s regulation to reduce carbon pollution from existing power plants. While the Clean Power Plan focuses on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, it also includes a program to make sure all communities benefit from a clean energy transition. This program—the Clean Energy Incentive Program—is currently open for comment, providing an important opportunity to shape the environmental justice and rural implications of the Clean Power Plan.


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