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Earth Issues

   

Florida’s newly invented solar panels

    
Florida’s newly invented solar panels

With Dilrukshi Handunnetti

As impacts of climate change grip the world anew, some positive developments took place last week with two inventive ideas being globally recognised for their ability to help combat climate change.

On April 14, a US$ 6 solar powered cooker was awarded the climate prize. This special cardboard box also dubbed the "Kyoto Box" is powered by solar energy and can be used to cook food.

This invention which could help three billion poor people cut their greenhouse emissions won a $75,000 prize for ‘ideas to fight global warming.’

The Kyoto Box is named after the Kyoto Protocol that seeks to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. This invention is aimed at billions of people who use firewood to cook.

Unique box

Developed by Jon Borhmer, a Norwegian based in Kenya, this unique box will cost just 5 euros or US $6.60 and can be used not just for cooking but also to boil polluted water that could be made potable.

The proud inventor on April l4 declared that it was aimed at ‘saving lives and saving trees’ as the world goes through drastic climatic changes.

The other finalists at the climate awards competition were a garlic-based feed additive to cut methane emissions from livestock, an indoor cooling system using hollow tiles, a cover for truck wheels to reduce fuel use and a "giant industrial microwave" for creating charcoal.

Now, Boehmer is ready to try his invention in 10 nations including India and then gather data to back an application for carbon credits.

More than 190 nations have now agreed to work out a new U.N. climate pact to succeed Kyoto at a meeting in Copenhagen in December 2009 as economic recession hits the world with full force.

Meanwhile, one of the biggest polluters, the United States in February this year came up with an invention to light up Florida with green energy.

A Florida utility and a real estate developer aims at bringing the country’s first solar-powered city to the sunny state and is hopeful that his invention will be well received.

Florida Power & Light is now working with the realty group Kitson & Partners to construct what is likely to be the world’s largest photovoltaic solar plant in a planned, environmentally friendly city near Fort Myers in southwestern Florida.

Called Babcock Ranch, the city will aim to build 19,500 houses and about six million square feet of retail, light industrial, and office space when completed at an estimated cost of $2 billion.

Accordingly, this sun city project is expected to create 20,000 jobs whilst serving as a model for other communities keen on green energy.

The company states it will be the first solar-powered city in the US and could generate solar power more than the requirement, hence creating the possibility of becoming an exporter of solar power.

In addition to having its electricity generated from solar energy, the entire city is expected to have wireless internet access and electric-car chargers. The city’s construction will commence in June 2010.

With the US reeling under economic recession and the new US head of state committed to a green energy policy, President Obama wants 10% of US electricity to be generated by renewable sources such as wind and solar power by 2012.

Meanwhile, the first housing and commercial buildings in the green energised city are said to come up by the end of 2010.


 

 
 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 


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