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News stories tagged with "alternative-energy"

The Biofuel Economy, part 2: ethanol alternatives

Ethanol fuel is grain alcohol blended with regular gasoline. E10 is the most common blend, 10% ethanol, 90% gas. It runs in regular cars. About a third of the gas sold in America is E10. E85 is 85% ethanol and only runs in specially designed engines. Ethanol is big business for American corn farmers. But corn isn't the only crop you can make ethanol from. And it may not be the best, for the environment or for North Country farmers. New York State is taking steps towards a radically different kind of ethanol production. Gregory Warner reports.  Go to full article

Biofuel Economy, Part I: Biodiesel

Biofuel. You hear a lot about it these days. And how the growing industry means new opportunities for farmers and foresters and other businesses in the North Country. Over the next few days we're going to take a closer look at what the biofuel economy might mean for the North Country. We'll look at big plans and small solutions.

First, what is biofuel? Biofuel means using biological material for energy. Like burning wood in a woodstove for heat. There are two kinds of biofuel used for transportation: ethanol and biodiesel. Ethanol is a gasoline additive made from vegetable crops - mostly corn. We'll talk more about ethanol tomorrow.

Today we'll look at biodiesel. Biodiesel is basically vegetable oil with the glycerin removed. It can run in diesel engines. It's mostly made from soybean oil. As fuel prices rise, It's becoming more cost-competitive. But as Gregory Warner reports, many consumers and farmers are still wary.  Go to full article

Capturing CO2 From Coal Plants

There's growing agreement now in the scientific community about global warming and how human activity is believed to be changing the climate. A lot of the blame is laid to pollution from coal-burning plants that produce electricity - and emit carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. That's fueling interest in alternative sources of electricity - renewables like wind, solar and hydro. Now, the U-S wants to build a coal plant that would capture and store the C0-2... if it can find the right site.
The GLRC's Julie Grant reports:  Go to full article

Cow Manure to Power SUNY Canton

Manure is a headache for every dairy farmer. Canton Farmer Joe TeRiele says its the most expensive part of farming. Even though his farm is considered small - he has around 800 cows - those cows produce over 14,000 gallons of manure and wastewater a day.

TeRiele stores the manure and uses it for fertilizer. Starting next fall, he'll be getting electricity from the manure as well. Next-door SUNY Canton is building a methane digester on the TeRiele farm - it will supply electricity to the farm and the college.  Go to full article
Wind developer Jim McAndrew
Wind developer Jim McAndrew

Wind Power Comes To Adirondack North Country, Raising Hopes & Fears

Two commercial wind farm projects are in the planning stages in the Adirondack Park. Other wind farms are moving forward in Franklin county, near Malone, and in Lewis county west of Lowville. Developers say renewable wind power could help New York state become less dependant on oil. They also say the giant windmills could generate much-needed income for rural communities. As Brian Mann reports, the projects have drawn support from pro-environment groups. But some activists worry that the wind farms will harm the region's scenic beauty and erode the quality of small town life.  Go to full article
Author & activist Bill McKibben
Author & activist Bill McKibben

Commentary: Wind Power A Necessary Evil & Symbol of Hope

If wind power projects go forward in the North Country, they will change the visual landscape for some of the most pristine areas in the Adirondack Park. Author and activist Bill McKibben spends much of each year wandering the hills and back roads near his home in Johnsburg. McKibben says the massive windmills are a necessary evil and a symbol of hope for a world threatened by global warming. Bill McKibben is author of the End of Nature and a new book due out this spring called Wandering Home about his his trek through the Champlain Valley. He divides his time between Johnsburg, in the Adirondacks, and Middlebury, Vermont. His essay first appeared in the New York Times.  Go to full article

Biodiesel Plant Shapes Up Slowly

Plans to build a biodiesel plant in St. Lawrence County are taking longer than expected. Canton College officials want to double the capacity of the factory. But they're still waiting for investors and federal legislation to make the project financially feasible. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Wood Power Electric Generator Planned for Tupper

With oil prices hovering at record levels, more north country families are using wood stoves as a primary heating source. New York state is now exploring the possibility of generating electricity using wood waste from the region's logging industry. On a visit this week to Tupper Lake, Governor Patki unveiled a state plan to build an experimental wood-powered generator in the village. Brian Mann has details.  Go to full article

Ag Department Using More Farm Grown Fuels

The Department of Agriculture is expanding its use of alternative fuels generated by farms. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium's Lester Graham reports.  Go to full article

GM Works on Home Fuel Cell Technology

GM is working on a new, environmentally friendly way to power homes. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium's Bill Poorman reports.  Go to full article

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