EERE Network News
June 15, 2005
News and Events
Teams from 13 states—California, Colorado, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, Virginia, and Washington—as well as Puerto Rico, Canada, and Spain will build solar homes on the National Mall in October.
For a low-income family, it's a great to have Habitat for Humanity help build you a home, but what if that home also uses little or no energy? On June 13th, Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman saw firsthand how new building technologies can allow a home to use net zero energy on an annual basis.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is awarding $4.4 million to 20 small enterprises that will develop innovative uses of woody biomass, including using it as an energy source. The projects will be carried out in nine western states, as well as Louisiana, Minnesota, and South Carolina.
A newly signed law in Oklahoma creates tax credits for the producing biodiesel, and as a result, the state's first biodiesel plant is already under construction. Iowa is also gaining a large biodiesel plant, and the U.S. biodiesel industry expects its production capacity to double over the next year.
Seventeen teams of engineering students are participating in Challenge X, a three-year competition to reengineer a Chevrolet Equinox to improve fuel economy and cut emissions. In June, the University of Waterloo won the design phase of the competition, marking the end of its first year.
The Bat and Wind Energy Cooperative (BWEC) released its 2004 report on bat interactions with wind turbines in early June. While the study found high bat mortality rates at two wind power sites, it also found trends that could lead to a mitigation strategy. None of the dead bats were listed species.
A new Web site from DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) provides access to state-specific energy information such as DOE grants, resource maps, project databases, energy statistics, publications, news, and contacts.
The Strategic Petroleum Reserve will reach 700 million barrels of oil in August, at which point it will be declared full. President Bush ordered the reserve filled in November 2001, resulting in the addition of 159 million barrels of crude oil. In today's market, the oil reserve is worth about $37 billion.