GreenBits: Briefs for the Week of Nov. 3, 2000

GreenBits: Briefs for the Week of Nov. 3, 2000

Highlights from the world of business and the environment: European Green Power Exchange Set to Launch in 2001 ... EPA Unveils First Virtual Auto Body Shop ... Record-Setting Solar Power System Installed ... Customers Can Choose to Pay for Cleaner Air

European Green Power Exchange Set to Launch

COPENHAGEN, Oct. 30, 2000 (Reuters) – A Europe-wide exchange to trade green energy will be launched in early 2001 to meet the growing demand for power from renewable sources, the Danish energy industry said on Friday. "Our aim is to show that it is possible to set up an international market for green power and that the administrative bit is manageable," said Hans-Erik Kristensen, economist at the Association of Danish Energy Companies. Fifty power companies from the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, Italy and the United Kingdom volunteered to form the Internet-based marketplace Renewable Energy Certification Systems. The exchange will allow certificates that producers obtain for producing green power from renewable energy such as wind, solar, biomass and small hydropower to be traded.

EPA Unveils First Virtual Auto Body Shop

WASHINGTON, Oct. 31. 2000 – They’ve got everything but the girlie calendars. In an effort to bring safer, cleaner, and more efficient practices and technologies to the auto refinishing shop, EPA has launched a first-of-a-kind auto body shop/information center on the Web. The site models collision repair facilities, a paint mixing room, a spray booth and auto repair shop. Clicking on props in any of the rooms takes the user to articles, guides, factsheets and EPA's DfE Best Practice Guide. It's all designed to protect the health of painters and shop workers, reduce emissions, and improve spray-painting efficiency. Visit the virtual auto body shop at

Record-Setting Solar Power System Installed

SUITLAND, Md., Nov. 1, 2000 – The General Services Administration and the Department of Energy have dedicated the largest multi-celled thin film solar power system in the United States at GSA's Suitland, Md. Federal Center near Washington, D.C. The GSA solar roof is the latest solar power system in the Clinton-Gore Administration's Million Solar Roofs initiative. The project converted an abandoned cooling pond into a "solar field" where electricity produced by the system is used in the facility's heating plant, reducing the amount of electricity purchased from local utilities. Deputy Secretary of Energy T. J. Glauthier lauded the project as a terrific example of how a public/private partnership can spur the development of clean, renewable energy.

Customers Can Choose to Pay for Cleaner Air

WASHINGTON, Nov. 3, 2000 (ENS) – America's most visited national park, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, once boasted views of up to 60 miles. Today, haze from power plants has reduced the average view to 12 miles, and ground level ozone is damaging at least 30 species of plants. The utility companies say they can't afford to clean up the deadly park pollution. But the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) thinks that many electricity customers would be happy to pay a little extra for cleaner air. In an effort to publicize this and other national park issues, the NPCA is hosting an online poll at As of Wednesday, consumers can vote online to add $0-$10 to their monthly utility bill to compensate power plants taking steps to protect air quality in national parks, including Great Smoky Mountains and Big Bend national parks. Poll results will be shared with Congress.