EERE Network News
April 30, 2008
News and Events
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) proposed new fuel economy standards on April 22 that will result in a 25% increase in fuel economy by 2015. But record gas prices are already causing a shift in consumer preferences that is leading automakers to shift toward greater fuel economy.
Just two months after setting new Energy Star criteria for televisions, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has completed the package by finalizing new criteria for set-top boxes. Set-top boxes carrying the Energy Star will start appearing in January 2009.
This year's crop of green buildings, selected by the American Institute of Architects and its Committee on the Environment, place an emphasis on geothermal heat pumps, radiant floor heating, displacement ventilation, and the use of earth as insulation and as a means of blocking sunlight.
All new large building projects in the City of Angels will have to meet rigorous green building standards, thanks to a new law signed on Earth Day. The new law is touted as the most aggressive green building ordinance of any big city in the United States.
For the sixth year in a row, the municipal utility for Austin, Texas, sold more green power to its customers than any other utility in the United States. So don't mess with Texas! More than 800 utilities across the United States now offer voluntary green power programs to their customers.
Maryland now requires utilities to draw on renewable energy for 20% of their electricity supply by 2022. The state will also be requiring utilities to establish energy efficiency programs, with the goal of a 15% reduction in per capita electricity use and peak demand by the end of 2015.
Global levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increased by 19 billion tons in 2007, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. But perhaps more troubling is a 27-million-ton increase in methane levels, which haven't increased since 1998.