Pandodyssey™ Panda Blog

This is a blog devoted to Giant Panda enthusiasts, environmental wanna-bes and peace loving funimals, world-wide.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Fossil Fuels Won't Power This Search Engine

Google has stepped into the renewable energy world in a huge way. Both and (Google's non-profit arm) are ready to invest hundreds of millions of dollars on new and promising renewable energy projects. In teaming up with universities and companies, the Googles will attempt to find ways to lower the cost of renewables. Today, coal is still the cheapest source of energy, costing 2 - 4 cents per kilowatt hour. Google hopes to drop the cost of renewable energy down to 1 - 3 cents per kilowatt hour, finally making renewables a viable option to coal fired power plants.

I'm a believer in Google. As the most successful company in existence today, I am totally psyched about Google getting so heavily involved in the search for alternative energy. With big guns like Google on board, fossil fuels don't stand a chance. Now it's just a matter of time.

I wonder if Google would want to fund my alternative energy solution? I would pay people by the kilowatt hour to work out on treadmills and bikes and stair masters, harness the energy that's generated and then use the energy to power the building itself, or sell it to the power company. Think of it as recycling those indulgent Thanksgiving feast calories into useful electricity - The PandodyGym!

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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Viva Vegetable Oil

How great would it be if you could refuel your car with cooking oil from your kitchen cabinet? That's exactly what Jared Fisher, owner of Escape Adventures - a sightseeing company, resorted to one morning when he discovered his company car's tank was on 'E'.

Earlier this year, Fisher spent around $9000 converting his six-vehicle fleet into hybrid vehicles that operate on either diesel fuel or vegetable oil. Fisher spends 4-6 hours a week driving around Vegas and pumping used vegetable oil from local restaurants for use in his vehicles. He estimates he has pumped roughly 3000 gallons of oil so far - nearly enough to make up for the entire cost of modifying his fleet.

People complain about the astronomical costs upfront to capture, convert, and store alternative energy, and how it's not feasible or easy to make money from going green. Then, you've got this guy who says "Nuts to that!" and for a $10,000 initial investment, is already seeing returns on his money. Plus, he's found a source of free fuel while simultaneously decreasing his expenditures on diesel fuel. Brilliant!

A business that's both green and profitable? Who would've thought it? I might have to invent The Medalodyssey to award to this guy and his corn oil cars. The Medalodyssey would be almost as prestigious as the Nobel Prize, but instead of a cash award and international recognition, you would receive a cheaply-crafted panda-themed gift in the mail sent to you C.O.D.