February 5, 2007

U.K. consultants offer 101 carbon-cutting strategies

Sometimes lots of small ideas have more impact than one big idea. This seems to be so within the energy market, where concerns over global warming and the security of fossil fuel supplies are driving innovation in the renewable energy sector, says CarbonFree, a research and analysis firm based in Cambridge, England. Its new report, 101 Ways To Kick The Carbon Habit, highlight 101 initiatives that could have a significant impact on carbon emissions and energy demand.

The report draws parallels between today's energy market and the early days of the Internet. Then, leading IT vendors, claiming the Internet would never be reliable enough to support commercial applications, largely ignored the army of innovative companies building Web-based software tools and services.

CarbonFree contends that incumbent energy providers are making a similar mistake as they jealously guard the last mile of their grids and claim nuclear energy to be the only workable replacement for fossil fuels. Nuclear power, says the company, has failed to live up to initial expectations: if safe, miniature nuclear reactors were on sale in do-it-yourself stores, says CarbonFree, distributed power and microgeneration enthusiasts would not be installing wind turbines, solar panels and micro-combined heat and power (CHP) systems.

The CarbonFree report recognizes that transport presents a major challenge in the battle to reduce carbon emissions, but suggests carpooling and similar trip-sharing schemes as one possible solution. The report cites interest in these on-line services from investors who see them as a social networking-based solution to congestion in urban areas.

The report provides 101 examples of the use of renewable energy technology or emission reduction initiatives. While some of the applications are speculative (e.g. distributed power generation and household hydrogen refuelling stations), others, such as hot water solar systems and medium-size wind turbines, have already been deployed and are earning revenue for vendors.

The main audience for the CarbonFree report includes power generators, next-generation energy providers, energy strategists and policy makers, and organizations active in the renewable energy market or interested in exploiting the growing market for renewable energy.

More information is available from Toby Jackson at CarbonFree, E-mail tjackson@steinkrug.co.uk,

Web site www.carbonfree.co.uk.

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