Alternative Energy

John Doerr: Obama Should “Kick Start” Green Energy Research

Legendary Silicon Valley venture capitalist John Doerr of Kleiner, Perkins, Caulfield & Byers sat down for an interview at the recent Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco and shared some thoughts in this video from ZDNet (click here or on embed below): The money quote: The most important thing (President-elect Barack Obama) has got to do is kick start a huge amount of innovation and research in energy. We invest less than a billion dollars a year in renewable energy research and that’s contrasted with health care which is $32 billion, and I think we’ve just scratched the surface in terms of clean ways to use energy, to create energy. It’s the challenge of our generation. It’s the scourge of Read More ›

U.S. Transportation Chief Visits Seattle

Seattle isn’t always the first stop for U.S. Cabinet officials. But if U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters‘ visit today is any indication, when the issue is transportation, Seattle is a natural top of agenda locale. With the help of Cascadia Center and others, Secretary Peters swept into town on Friday for a series of meetings with business and policy leaders. The Cascadia Center, with its growing leadership in the alternative energy and plug-in hybrid, electric vehicle space, played a critical role in the visit by coordinating several meetings for the United States’ 15th transportation chief. Today’s closed meetings and work sessions focused on the question of transportation technology, innovation, finance and the Northwest’s leadership role in finding solutions to Read More ›

Domestic Demand Strains Global Oil Market

It seems the global oil market isn’t immune to at least one law of nature: The apex predator has the most voracious appetite. The New York Times reports that the very oil-exporting countries that are experiencing remarkable domestic economic growth because of the global demand for oil may soon become victims of their own success. Experts say … several of the world’s most important suppliers may need to start importing oil within a decade to power all the new cars, houses and businesses they are buying and creating with their oil wealth. … The report [by Canada-based CIBC World Markets] said “soaring internal rates of oil consumption” in Russia, in Mexico and in member states of the Organization of the Read More ›

New Study: PHEVs Could Help Slash Greenhouse Gas Emissions

A new study issued by the Electric Power Research Institute and the Natural Resources Defense Council reports that adoption of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles by consumers and fleet managers could by 2050 cut U.S. carbon dioxide emissions by 163 to 612 million metric tons, and total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 3.4 to 10.3 billion metric tons. How much of a difference would that really make? MIT Technology Review assesses the study’s findings this way: The study shows that if plug-in hybrids are adopted widely in the United States, and if measures are taken to clean up power plants, by 2050, plug-in hybrids could reduce carbon-dioxide emissions by 612 million metric tons, or roughly 5 percent of the total U.S. Read More ›

Big Vehicle Import Center, Biofuels Plant Eyed for Vancouver, WA Port

The Columbian reports this morning that an affiliate of a Swedish-Norwegian shipping concern has announced its preliminary intent to build a big vehicle import center as part of the Port of Vancouver, Washington’s Columbia Gateway industrial development. On Tuesday, port officials signed a letter of intent with Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics Americas to develop the $453 million facility that would dwarf the port’s existing Subaru operation and match the Port of Portland’s auto business. Wallenius Wilhelmsen would build a marine terminal and processing facility on 344 acres that the port would make construction-ready, according to the deal. The facility, projected to generate a $62 million annual payroll, could be operational by late 2010 or 2011. …the facility will be able to Read More ›

Green Idaho A Harbinger

The Idaho Statesman reports: The most conservative state in the union is a part of a remarkable cultural shift toward environmental values. Consider: • Al Gore attracts 10,000 people to his slide show on global warming at Taco Bell Arena in January. • Bill Moyers highlights Boise’s evangelical Vineyard Fellowship for its environmental message and acts in the PBS special “Is God Green?” last fall. • Former Gov. Jim Risch gets a standing ovation from a largely Republican crowd when he announces in Twin Falls last year that Idaho plans to opt out of a mercury pollution trading program, keeping coal-fired power plants out of the state. Growing concerns about climate change are pegged as one big reason for Idaho’s Read More ›

“Saving The Earth Sensibly” With A Carbon Tax

In “Go Green? Go West,” Los Angeles Times opinion columnist Ronald Brownstein writes that the Western U.S. is poised to lead on alternative energy. The “sagebrush rebellion” resource extraction push of decades past has given way to “a renewable revolution” bearing both real promise and all the expected consumer cost caveats, Brownstein posits. Across the West, governors from both parties are advancing the nation’s most ambitious policies to promote clean energy, encourage conservation and reduce emissions of greenhouse gases…leaders in the West are…drawing support from ideologically diverse local coalitions that include new residents concerned about preserving an attractive environment and agricultural and tourism interests fearful that global warming may undermine their industries. Even major utilities across the West have enlisted. Read More ›

Research Compendium

Last updated August 25, 2008 The research, it just keeps coming. On this page, we’ll compile links to key studies and reports on innovation in transportation. MANAGING, PLANNING & FUNDING TRANSPORTATION Cascadia Center Reports “Lessons In Public-Private Partnerships & Climate Change: What British Columbia Taught California, And What Washington Can Still Learn,” 10/07. “A Tale Of Three Cities: How San Diego, Denver and Vancouver, B.C. Raised Major Regional Funds For Transportation,” Doug Hurley, Cascadia Center For Regional Development, 9/06. “Travel Value Pricing: Better Traffic Operations Management & New Revenue For The Puget Sound Region,” John S. Niles, for Cascadia Center, 4/06. “Transportation Working Group Recommendations,” Transportation Working Group, Cascadia Center For Regional Development, 2/15/05. Transportation Working Group background, members, and Read More ›