Since diving into the deep end when it comes to energy issues, almost every day sees new fascinating concepts, approaches, and technologies. Fascinating … exciting … even hope inspiring at times. And, as well, as the passion builds, so many of these are truly Energy COOL. One pleasure of attending energy-related conferences is the chance to wander the trade show and talk to (and learn from) a range of innovators and experts from a diversity of firms. Today, spending hours in the Maryland Clean Energy Center (MCEC)’s annual “summit”’s trade show provided multiple interesting conversations and learning opportunities whether discussions with a Siemens employee about how Siemens works with school systems that have Energy Performance Service Contracts (EPSCs) to develop educational curricula associated with school building performance or discussions with EnergyPoints staff about their path toward providing businesses a single-resource (energy, water, waste) measure to support investment to support improved sustainability and returns on investment. Both of these — and other trade show floor conversations — were Energy COOL meriting further investigation.
The MCEC event represented a first in my conference experience. Sitting at the luncheon awards event, a typical ‘let us tell how wonderful our community’ video began … and, in a few minutes, the moderate inattention while sipping coffee turned to note taking. Highlighted company after company tweaked my interest in Energy COOL ways.
- Fiberight removes biomass from the trash stream and processes it into biofuels.This extends landfill life, provides a non-food path toward meeting biofuel mandates, and their process also can generate electricity. While better to ‘reduce’ rather than trash, Fiberight offers a path toward recycling/reuse of materials that otherwise would fill up landfills to create a methane challenge for decades to come.
- Hy-tek Bio captures exhaust from burning fossil fuels uses this as food for algae growing in tubes. Their system has multiple innovations that look to create viable paths toward cost-effective CCR rather than the overhyped CCS (carbon capture and reutilization vs carbon capture and sequestration).
- Savenia Labs fills in where Energy Star dares not go by providing an independent lab assessment of non-Energy Star rated commercial devices and providing an easily understood rating system for consumers.
- FlexEl makes flexible batteries that can be incorporated into, for example, clothing. As described in the video, these are non-toxic batteries which provide a path for reducing the injuries for U.S. soldiers who can be contaminated by shattered batteries which exacerbate the risks and seriousness of battlefield injuries.
It is rare (perhaps even unique) where a conference luncheon video makes me want to learn more about every highlighted company … kudos to MCEC (and Maryland’s focus on developing energy efficiency and renewable energy) for packaging so many eye-catching Energy COOL firms in this video.