New alternative to Trump's wall would create jobs, renewable energy, and increase border security

A consortium of scientists and engineers have proposed that the U.S. and Mexico build a series of guarded solar, wind, natural gas and desalination facilities along the entirety of the border.

Credit: Purdue University photo/Jorge Castillo Quiñones
  • The proposal was recently presented to several U.S. members of Congress.
  • The plan still calls for border security, considering all of the facilities along the border would be guarded and connected by physical barriers.
  • It's undoubtedly an expensive and complicated proposal, but the team argues that border regions are ideal spots for wind and solar energy, and that they could use the jobs and fresh water the energy park would create.
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Disney builds massive solar facility to cut emissions in half by 2020

Disney, one of world's largest entertainment companies, doubles down on its environmental plan.

Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Company
  • Disney is taking the lead in reducing greenhouse emissions at its facilities.
  • The company built a giant solar panel installation to power its Florida resort.
  • Disney plans to cut emissions by 50 percent by the year 2020.
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Greece aims to modernize its islands with Tesla Powerpacks, microgrids

Is Tesla a car manufacturer or an energy company?

  • The Greek government is considering collaborating with Tesla to modernize the electric grids on its many islands.
  • The project(s) would involve microgrids connected to Tesla's energy storage systems.
  • Tesla has helped to make energy storage technology better and more affordable in recent years.
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Scientists can now bottle solar energy, turn it into liquid fuel

The barrier to solar energy has always been storage. Now, bottled sunshine has a shelf-life of 18 years.

Image: Zerbor/zapulzon/Shutterstock/Big Think
  • Researchers have invented a liquid isomer that can store and release solar energy.
  • The team has solved problems other researchers have previously encountered.
  • The discovery could lead to more widespread use of solar energy.

As the world moves to renewable energy, solar energy has proven to be among the most attractive: Sunlight is free and releasing its energy produces no pollution or harmful effects. One remaining limiting factor has been finding ways of storing solar energy that are as clean as solar energy itself. Much work is being down with batteries, but it's difficult to produce power cells without using toxic materials. The MOST system offers an exciting new angle to pursue.

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Will China’s green energy tipping point come too late?

Pay attention to the decisions made by the provinces.

  • China leads the world in numerous green energy categories.
  • CO2 emissions in the country totaling more than all coal emissions in the U.S. have recently emerged.
  • This seems to be an administrative-induced blip on the way towards a green energy tipping point.
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