RMI Outlet, Rocky Mountain Institute’s blog, explores topics critical to RMI’s mission to transform global energy use to create a clean, prosperous, and secure low-carbon future.
Plug Into New Ideas
Electric vehicle (EV) and clean energy advocates rejoice! The first mainstream EVs to hit dealerships across the U.S., the Chevrolet Volt and Nissan Leaf, both received top safety ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. As the Associated Press reported: “While both the Leaf and Volt are classified as small cars, the institute said their heavy battery packs put their weight closer to large sedans. The Volt, for example, weighs 3,760 pounds, which is close to the weight of the Chevrolet Impala. The Leaf weighs 3,370 pounds, which is similar to a Nissan Altima midsize car. That extra mass helps protect their occupants, since heavier cars are less likely to be pushed around in a crash.” [emphasis added] But there’s a problem with this last thought: weight is conflated with size.
Victor Olgyay, an RMI Buildings principal who leads Rocky Mountain Institute’s RetroFit initiative, testified today before the U.S. House Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight on the impact and importance of fossil-fuel reduction targets and green building rating systems.
I’ve heard the design approach for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory Research Support Facility (RSF) described as “first eating your vegetables then having dessert.”
The characteristic floodlights that illuminate the top of the Empire State Building will shine a bright green May 10 to honor Rocky Mountain Institute’s 30 years of work in energy efficiency.
Q&A: Dana Schneider, VP, Sustainability Services Market Lead, Jones Lang LaSalle--In 2009, owners of one of New York City’s great architectural landmarks, the Empire State Building embarked on a renovation to reduce the skyscraper’s energy use by more than one-third by 2013. Part of an overall $500 million building makeover, the energy efficiency strategies, ranging from window replacements and insulation to electrical upgrades and tenant education, are bringing annual savings of more than $4 million, with just a three-year payback on the investment.