Growing the Clean Technology industry in BC

The roots of the clean technology industry in BC go back to companies such as Xantrex Technology, Ballard Power, Westport Innovations, Quest-Air, Delta Q,  NxtPhase Corporation and Cellex Power Products.   By 2004 it became clear that the industry was quietly exceeding over $600 million in revenues and employing thousands of people. The Power Technology…

An accessible tablet where fewer features is the main feature!

Claris is a technology company in Vancouver that gets the power of simplicity. They have developed a Tablet computer designed to do a really good job at helping seniors communicate.  It is easy to do a video call, easy to view photos or do email.    While they are aiming at seniors it is also something to look…

Call for papers: The 4th Climate Change Technology Conference (CCTC 2015)

The 4th Climate Change Technology Conference (CCTC 2015), organized by The Engineering Institute of Canada (EIC) and ten of its member societies,  is a forum for Canadian and International participants to exchange ideas on emerging techniques and technologies for the mitigation of, and adaptation to, the impacts of climate change. If you have a technology…

eBay decides to run a full data center on fuel cells

The six megawatts of cells will run on biogas, generated by organic waste at landfills or farms, and natural gas, use the grid only for backup power. I love this announcement, along  with the fact that Daimler Benz is opening a fuel cell plant in Vancouver,  as it gives amazing credibility to a technology sector, and a group…

Can fracking be cleaned up?

  I would like to believe that one day we won’t need hydrocarbons but until that day comes a  new analysis by the US International Energy Agency says technologies exist—or are in development—that could largely address these concerns.  The biggest challenge is that companies are simply not following the instructions that came with the technology–what…

Simple technology solutions always have the biggest impact

This unique image, captured by motion-sensitive cameras, offers an extraordinary glimpse of an animal that many Canadians have never seen. A Canada lynx uses the Redearth Creek wildlife overpass to cross the Trans-Canada Highway in Banff National Park at 8:34 a.m. on March 28, 2012. Since 1996, over 200,000 animals, including grizzlies, wolves and cougars,…

Nudging the world toward smarter public policy

While you may hate when your kids do it  apparently it is a good thing for pubic policy!  In the UK a “Nudge unit” has been created to develop policies that will enhance the public welfare by helping citizens make better choices.   It advocates an Open Government system and applies the ideas of behavioral economics to…

Brain Plasticity–the act of rewiring your brain

Contrary to what has previously been believed, recent research advances have demonstrated that the adult brain has a certain capacity for plastic reorganization and self-repair after an event like a stroke or other injury.  The mechanisms are complex and operating at different levels, from molecular to synaptic to anatomical reorganization. However, with the right training,…

Bringing industry back to the city centre

For many years we have seen the flight of manufacturing from the core of our cities.   For many reasons a company that manufacturers a product in the middle of a city seems like a poor choice–or is it?   In Vancouver we have taken nearly all the industrial land and developed it into high rises. Now…

How B.C.’s economy can be green and still growing

Reprinted from Business in Vancouver May 19-25, 2009; issue 1021 http://www.biv.com It’s tough to sit down and put your feet up to watch a good hockey game or laugh through a sitcom these days without being bombarded by political statements about our province’s future and the green economy. But what is a green economy? Is…

Making Sustainability a Business

B.C.’s growing reputation feeds continued multi-industry growth For several years we’ve been hearing about sustainability. While it’s easy to find loads of information on the definition of sustainability, it is much harder to find anything on the people and services that make sustainability a reality. And the reality is we have some of the best…

Kyoto plan: Emission credits send the wrong message

Focus should be on developing local markets for local technology On April 13, the feds released Moving forward on Climate Change: A Plan for Honouring our Kyoto Commitment. Clearly the plan lacks certain logic. The most obvious example to me is the encouragement of a large emitter of greenhouse gases to invest in international projects…

Pension funds can boost green technologies

Have you ever wondered what the $40 billion or so that the B.C. government has in pension holdings for teachers, hospital workers and government employees is invested in? You should go to http://www.pensionsbc.ca and look. It might surprise you to learn that the money is not invested in a way that will make our province…