The Science of Sustainability

Tag: renewable energy

Get Energized by KQED’s New E-books and iTunes U Course

Get Energized by KQED’s New E-books and iTunes U Course

Think you know all there is to know about energy? Buff up your energy awareness and knowledge with KQED's new e-book and iTunes U course.

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Microgrids: Electricity Goes Local

Microgrids: Electricity Goes Local

Microgrids, which can connect to the main grid but also have their own, independent energy supply, increase energy efficiency and keep expensive power outages from spreading.

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Tobacco Gets a Makeover as New Source for Biofuel

Tobacco Gets a Makeover as New Source for Biofuel

Is a new biofuel a win for renewable energy or the far-reaching arms of the tobacco industry?

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Nonrenewable and Renewable Energy Resources

Nonrenewable and Renewable Energy Resources

This infographic depicts the two major categories of energy resources: nonrenewable and renewable.

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Career Spotlight: Insulation and Coatings Technician

Career Spotlight: Insulation and Coatings Technician

Samuel Weatherwax is an insulation and coatings technician for a geothermal power plant.

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Career Spotlight: Microbiologist

Career Spotlight: Microbiologist

Aindrila Mukhopadhyay is a microbiologist who directs a group researching ways to use microbes to convert plants into biofuels.

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Career Spotlight: Kite Designer

Career Spotlight: Kite Designer

Damon Vander Lind works at Makani Power building high-altitude kites that can generate more power than conventional wind turbines.

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Career Spotlight: Mechatronics Engineer

Career Spotlight: Mechatronics Engineer

Leila Madrone is a mechatronics engineer who leads a team that is designing heliostats — mechanisms used in concentrating solar power systems.

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QUEST TV: America’s Energy Future

QUEST TV: America’s Energy Future

Tour a solar energy farm, investigate fracking, and explore new energy-efficient home designs in this television episode.

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Stanford Solar Car Races Across Australian Desert

Stanford Solar Car Races Across Australian Desert

Stanford University students design and race a single passenger solar car 1,800 miles across the Australian continent in an international competition that pushes the boundaries of solar-powered technology.

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Wind Energy and Wildlife: Nebraska Strives for Coexistence

Wind Energy and Wildlife: Nebraska Strives for Coexistence

The unique dynamics of developing wind energy in Nebraska may benefit wildlife, habitats, and developers throughout the country.

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China’s ‘Gridlock’ May Slow Conversion to Clean Energy

China’s ‘Gridlock’ May Slow Conversion to Clean Energy

California and China share the challenge of updating their power grids for the new age of clean energy. But China's task would appear to be–um–bigger.

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Solar Powers China's March Toward Sustainability

Solar Powers China's March Toward Sustainability

China has vaulted out front in the solar power game. That's been good for consumers but perplexing to its California competitors.

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Q & A – How Will the Solar Industry Shake Out?

Q & A – How Will the Solar Industry Shake Out?

Plummeting prices, trade war, record growth – it’s been a busy year for the solar industry. Reporter Lauren Sommer talks to a solar analyst about how California is doing in the rapidly changing global market.

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Looming Trade War Shakes Up U.S. Solar Industry

Looming Trade War Shakes Up U.S. Solar Industry

Federal officials have put trade tariffs on Chinese solar panels. American solar companies are split on whether it will be good or bad for the industry.

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As Renewables Boom, California Struggles to Quit Coal

As Renewables Boom, California Struggles to Quit Coal

California is known for its "green" reputation, so it might be a surprise that residents in Southern California still depend on coal power when they turn on the lights.

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How Green is Biomass Energy?

How Green is Biomass Energy?

When you think of where energy comes from, you might picture a power plant or maybe wind mills. You probably wouldn't think of a pile of 12 tons of almond shells.

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Reporter's Notes: Cow Power Not Cutting It

Reporter's Notes: Cow Power Not Cutting It

A handful of dairies across California are capturing the climate change emissions produced by their cows. But they're running headlong into another environmental problem.

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Renewables on Indian Land

Renewables on Indian Land

Indian reservations hold an estimated 10 percent of the nation's renewable energy resources — hot, windy tracts that suddenly seem more valuable than ever. The Campo tribe, near San Diego, has taken the lead, building the country's only utility-scale wind installation on Indian land. Plans are afoot to triple the project. But tribe members say tax incentives and other federal programs put Indians at a disadvantage.

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Energy Storage: The Holy Grail

Energy Storage: The Holy Grail

This week, we continue our series "33 by 20," a look at California's ambitious renewable energy goals. Solar and wind power are booming across the state. But renewables have a downside: there are times when the sun doesn't shine and the wind doesn't blow. California utilities are looking to smooth out those bumps with a new strategy: storing electricity.

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