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Microsoft aims to use 50% renewable energy by 2018

Microsoft aims to use 50% renewable energy by 2018

Microsoft has some ambitious goals to decrease its impact on the environment, and chief among them is the plan to utilize 50-percent renewable energy by 2018. This renewable energy will come from a mixture of solar power, wind, and hydro power, which the company says it buys through the grid and directly. The 2018 goal is only the start: Microsoft wants to see the percentage increase to 60-percent by the next upcoming decade, and to keep increasing upward from there.

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Germany will soon have a quieter, hydrogen-powered train

Germany will soon have a quieter, hydrogen-powered train

“Environment-friendly trains” is probably a bit of an oxymoron, unless you’re talking about electric-powered ones. Ever since their first incarnations, trains have been synonymous not just with the consumption of massive amounts of diesel but also of CO2 emission. But as they are an integral part of public transportation, especially in European countries, they can’t be simply removed. In Germany, however, a solution is already being tested in the form of the Coradia iLint, billed as the world’s first clean and green train fit for public use.

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Telsa and SolarCity’s solar roof slated for October reveal

Telsa and SolarCity’s solar roof slated for October reveal

Hot on the heels of the announcement that it intends to buy alternative energy company SolarCity, Tesla is wasting no time getting to work. We've already heard of Tesla plans to utilize SolarCity's expertise to produce a new solar roof, and now we have a date for when we can expect to see it. Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted today that the company is aiming for an October 28 reveal of the new roof, planning to show it off at an event in the San Francisco Bay area.

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NYC OKs plan to turn abandoned terminal into underground park

NYC OKs plan to turn abandoned terminal into underground park

New York City has approved a plan that will turn an abandoned trolley terminal into an underground park. The project was announced months ago, and renders of it have been provided by The Lowline showing walking spaces, green plants, and solar technology used to provide light. The park will be developed at the Lower East Side's Williamsburg Bridge Trolley Terminal, and will eventually be the first underground park in the world.

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Paris opens first part of its highway for bicycles

Paris opens first part of its highway for bicycles

Many people like the idea of getting around on a bicycle, but not having to do so on the same roads as cars. To deal with that issue, Paris has decided to create a 28-mile highway that is exclusively for bicycles, banning all motorized vehicles on them and, as a result, making a safe space for cyclists to get around more quickly. The highway is called Reseau express velo, REVe for short, and it was first voted upon last year.

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First US solar roadway to be installed on historic Route 66

First US solar roadway to be installed on historic Route 66

Solar roads are a very interesting idea that could one day see the roads around our nation generate power for use by streetlights, signals, or even nearby homes. The first section of solar roadway in the US is coming to a section of historic Route 66 in Missouri. The installation is part of the Missouri Road to Tomorrow initiative.

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Sweden launches test strip of electrified highway

Sweden launches test strip of electrified highway

Sweden has launched its first electric highway, something that is serving as a test of sorts for a potential wider rollout later on. This is part of the nation’s stated goal of ditching fossil fuel-based transportation in the future, making it possible for electric trucks to operate across a two kilometer stretch of freeway. The electric highway features electrified cables running overhead; electric trucks connected to them get their power through the lines, eliminating worries about batteries and range while curbing pollution and more.

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Apple will begin selling its excess green energy

Apple will begin selling its excess green energy

Apple has formed a new subsidiary company, but not one for developing the latest computer and mobile devices. Instead, "Apple Energy LLC" will be used to sell the surplus energy the company generates at its solar power farms. Incorporated in the state of Delaware in late May, Apple Energy has filed its request to sell power to markets in the US with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

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Adidas shows off a pair of running shoes made from ocean plastics

Adidas shows off a pair of running shoes made from ocean plastics

Back in December, adidas and Parley for the Oceans detailed a running shoe made with ocean plastic. Now, half a year later, adidas has showcased a finished pair of those shoes, as well as providing pictures and details about the process used to create them. A bunch of work went into collecting, then cleaning and processing plastics found floating in the ocean, turning it into a type of teal green yarn.

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Portugal ran solely on renewable energy for 107 hours straight

Portugal ran solely on renewable energy for 107 hours straight

Portugal recently hit a new clean energy milestone, managing to run for 107 hours straight solely on renewable energy. The energy sources were wind, water, and solar, with the trio — and the technology that harvests them — sustaining the region’s power needs from 6:45AM local time on May 7, a Saturday, to 5:45PM on the following Wednesday. The data comes from ZERO and the Portuguese Renewable Energy Association.

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Solar Impulse finally leaves Hawaii to complete Pacific crossing

Solar Impulse finally leaves Hawaii to complete Pacific crossing

Earlier this week we talked a bit about the Solar Impulse solar-powered aircraft that had been grounded in Hawaii for an extended period of time. A severe overheating in the battery packs that store the solar energy led to damage requiring those batteries to be replaced. Earlier this week we had learned that test flights had been conducted and the aircraft was waiting for the ideal window to take off. That launch happened yesterday when the Solar Impulse left Kalaeloa, Hawaii.

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Bioo pot uses plants to charge your phone

Bioo pot uses plants to charge your phone

A team has launched what they say is the first plant pot capable of charging your phone, and it’s called Bioo. The pot is said to produce electricity in a roundabout way from the plant’s photosynthesis, giving users a green alternative to solar chargers for powering up their gadgets. The pot features a charging port that’s disguised as a rock, presumably a battery to store the electricity being generated, and more.

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