transport

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sa's crown joule on display at geneva

Submitted by turbosprout on Fri, 2010-03-05 16:02

Joule at Geneva: SA Car FanJoule at Geneva: SA Car FanOptimal Energy's Joule is on display at the 80th International Motor Show in Geneva and she's looking prettier than ever.

When last seen at the Paris Motor Show, the Joule was a static display model and she has now evolved into a pre-production prototype courtesy of Zagato's Total Design Centre.

The Optimal Energy-Zagato-Helfet team has made a number of changes to Joule and the car shown in Geneva is somewhat different, especially at the rear, from the version that was unveiled in Paris two years ago.

This car was hand-built in Port Elizabeth by Hi-Tech Automotive who are building a marketing and test fleet of approximately 100 vehicles, some of which

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driving your way to the bank

Submitted by MichaelE on Wed, 2010-03-03 18:29

I'm sure you've heard of a little thing called the recession. Well, in light of recent economic upheavals, I think that many of us are concerned with saving a couple of rand wherever we can. One way of doing this is to drive more efficiently. Most of you probably have a commute to work. By learning to drive effectively you can save fuel which in turn saves energy and is good for the environment and your wallet.


green prefab homes, jet fuel from rubbish, and eskom shuns renewable energy

Submitted by sproutingforth on Tue, 2010-02-23 12:04

Green prefab homes rising in popularity
A modular home manufacturer in USA says that, where other builders are cutting projects in the down economy, his company is raising production of the energy-efficient model, called the 'i-house' – a solar modular home. South Africa has its own version that's caused quite a stir, known as Zenkaya – ready-made living space that is re-defining the term 'prefab' and giving it a new eco-friendly and eco-chic slant. They're cheeky, easy, chic and unique. The designs are based on core sustainable principles – efficient use of space, reducing waste in the factory, and all materials are recyclable.

Eskom shuns renewable energy
An Irish energy company, Mainstream Renewable Power, claims that Eskom does not want renewable energy to succeed in SA. Mainstream vented its frustration over what it said was Eskom’s unwillingness to accommodate renewable energy players in the SA power generation market. It last year established a joint venture with local company Genesis Eco-Energy to build wind farms to generate 500MW in the Eastern, Northern and Western Cape. “Eskom does not want renewables. They do not want competition,” Mainstream CEO Eddie O’Connor said yesterday. [businessday] read here about what Eskom should be doing...


greening it up - chinese clean energy, egyptian wind farm, joule production, jse responsible investment, bp ethanol

Submitted by turbosprout on Mon, 2009-11-09 17:52


China to build 100 Clean Energy projects in Africa in three years. At a two-day China-Africa summit in Egypt Chinese premier Wen Jiabao pledged 10bn in low interest loans to African nations over the next three years. He also said China would build 100 energy projects that cover solar power, biogas and small hydro plants over the same period as part of an effort to help the continent deal with climate change. Business Day

Egypt gearing up for 250MW Wind Farm. The Egyptian Electrictity and Energy Ministry said on a statement on its website that 34 companies had submitted bids for the project on the Red Sea coast. The project developer will design, finance, construct, own and operate the power plant for 20 to 25 years and sell the power on to the Egyption Electricity Transmission Company. Egypt plans to generate 12% of its power from wind and 20% from renewables overall by 2020. Times Live


'aviation estate' for malmesbury – the battle continues

Submitted by sproutingforth on Thu, 2009-03-19 09:27

In September last year we blogged about a proposed aviation estate just outside Malmesbury for leisure flying fanatics.

“The intention is to have 371 erven and further hangars for hire. Translated that means at least 371 aeroplanes, helicopters, gyrocopters etc. continuously landing and taking off alongside the R302 south of Malmesbury en route to Klipheuwel. This delightful prospect will include a 1.2 kilometre runway, helicopter pads and landing sites, fuel storage facilities, filling stations, control towers and other buildings, as well as large swathes of grassed areas.”

We've just had the latest update from those challenging the development, who let us know that the proposal has gone ahead to the scoping stage.

From the scoping document it's clear that the proposal is even worse than previously thought...

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green blog roundup: self-sufficient nz family, human water pumps, the bike that folds into a rucksack…

Submitted by turbosprout on Fri, 2009-01-30 11:07

Human powered water pumps can solve the water crisis in developing and underdeveloped countries. Statistics point out that about one billion people lack access to safe drinking water, which leads to several diseases. A system has now been developed that can use the endless energy of children to pump underground water to the surface, which can then prevent waterborne diseases from spreading. [ecofriend]

A New Zealand based family has given up all luxuries and technology in an effort to educate the world the ways to go green and sustainable. The house has been constructed with recycled materials. Furniture too is made from recycled and post-use materials, and ...


greening it up – gyo, renewable energy creates jobs, carbon tax won’t reduce emissions, and coca-cola's hybrid trucks

Submitted by sproutingforth on Mon, 2009-01-19 10:15

pic: independent.co.ukpic: independent.co.ukGrow your own. As we feel the pinch as shoppers, more of us are turning our manicured lawns into vegetable patches. If the burning trend in the UK is anything to go by, mirrored by a parallel escalation in Cape Town, suburbia will soon become a source of food as vegetable beds, sapling fruit trees and compost heaps become the norm. [independent]

Renewable energy the potential to create thousands of jobs. In the face of Eskom’s moot to increase electricity tariffs by up to R9/kwh for high energy consumers (a huge leap from 25c/kwh), the DA has called for an urgent overhaul of the energy sector: a new Ministry of Energy and Climate Change, unbundling Eskom’s monopoly over production and generation of electricity, and meeting our 15% target for renewable energy introduction, addressing the skills shortage in SA. [moneyweb] [citizen]

Introducing a carbon tax not best way to cut carbon emissions in SA, says Deloitte. Research recently carried out by the firm into potential emission reduction methods indicated that the best way to reduce emissions in the country was by way of a cap-and-trade system. A carbon tax does nothing to incentivise much-needed behavioural changes. Nor would it


world naked bike ride - fri 13th march 2009

Submitted by turbosprout on Wed, 2009-01-14 17:38

world naked bike rideworld naked bike rideWord's out that there will be a lot of naked people riding around the southern hemisphere on bicycles on fri 13th mar. Anyone out there keen to organise a Naked Bike Ride in your city?

Take a look at worldnakedbikeride.org if you're game.

I don't think there's been a successful, large Naked Bike ride on public roads in SA yet. If memory serves the one that was supposed to happen in CT in June 2007 was cancelled due to general confusion. So here's a great chance for some organiser to make history (and get your pic in Die Son).

Here's a recent communique from the international organisers:

Ladies and Gentlemen, Behold! The Most Fun You Can Have Naked!
Sign Up to Roll Out a World Naked Bike Ride in Your Own Neighbourhood!

The World Naked Bike Ride has become an international sensation that has spread to 73 cities around the world. This year we will be


out with the old, in with the new

Submitted by turbosprout on Thu, 2009-01-08 21:00

eco fireworks?eco fireworks?After an extended and much needed break the sprouts are now back at the sprout-cave. Well kinda. We're still doing a bit of belated spring cleaning, rearranging, gearing up and and generally getting ready to go forth and conquer in 2009. Hope you had a good break too and that you're all revved up for a great year!

2008 is history and it disappeared in a blink. These are the 10 most popular reads on urban sprout last year, just in case you missed them.

SA's electric car, Joule - Official pics. Our own electric car is unveiled at the Paris Motor show. This was in my opinion one of the coolest things to happen last year. Let's all hold thumbs Optimal Energy gets the investment required to start mass production. I'd love to have one of these baby's parked in my garage circa 2011.

Darling wind farm powers up. Seems like eons ago we first blogged about the Darling Wind Farm, but it only took around two years to get them up and running. Eskom could (and should) learn a thing or two about wind-powered energy from these guys.


Draft: Electric Cars - Can South Africans wean themselves off Fossil Fuels?

Submitted by Michael on Tue, 2008-12-02 17:00

I am unashamed about the fact that I really want an electric car. Not only that but I really really want everyone else to have one.
Most people seem to think that an electric car is going to be slow (it isn't), have a short range (it doesn't have to), and is anyway just not worth thinking about (it is).
To be honest, when you start to think about it, the astonishing thing is that we are not all driving them already.
In our cities and towns we are all busy choking on the fumes of the internal combustion engine and putting up with the noise of all the vehicles around us when we could be brething clean air and living in the quiet.
Just think about the advantages:

  • Electric Vehicles (EVs) produce no emissions
  • An electric motor is far more efficient than an internal combustion engine
  • EVs are quiet
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