Greener Chip Manufacturing Process

In a story that is making it’s way around the web, researchers at the University College London have devised a new way to produce computer chips.

computer chip

The production of computer chips currently takes a vast amount of energy to heat furnaces to 1000 degrees Celsius. The heat transforms silicon to silicon dioxide, a key ingredient of computer chips. The new process encourages this reaction using cool ultraviolet light instead of intense heat.

Computer manufacture is one of the most polluting industries out there. This is one step towards reversing that trend.

Building Green = $$$

A new study by the Real Property Association of Canada reveals that adding green features to a building equals better sale value!

“Rick Nevin and Gregory Watson found that people pay $10-$20 more for a home for every $1 reduction in annual fuel bills.

The Heschong Mahone Group found that ‘adding skylighting to the average non-skylit retail store would be likely to improve its performance by 40%’.

Pennsylvania Power and Light noted a conversion’s electricity savings amounted to a payback in 4.1 years with a 24% return on investment.However benefits from lower absenteeism and higher productivity meant a simple payback of just 69 days,a 540% return on investment…

Not only are green buildings good for the environment, provide healthier places to live and more productive places to work ,they can command higher rents and prices, attract tenants more quickly, reduce tenant turnover and cost less to operate and maintain.”

And in other building related green new, scientists have figured out how to use people power!

Belgian Orchestra for Sale on E-Bay

When the Belgian Chamber Orchestra discovered they would not be recieving their government grant for 2007 they did what any organization would do. Yip! They put themselves up for bid on E-Bay! Suprisingly in just one week the bid rose from 1 euro to 8000! The group usually works with a budget of just over one million euros, so they still have a ways to go. But hopefully someone with a love of Beethoven and a few million euros will get up on E-Bay and save the day for the innovative musicians, who are not going out without exploring every option they can. Someone also put the Flemish Ministry of Culture and a list of all it’s members on E-Bay. It’s gotten no bids.

Gitmo a No-Go With Supreme Court-o

Today the U.S. Supreme Court released their decision on the constitutional validity of military tribunals held for prisoners in Guantanamo Bay. The challenge was put forth specifically with respect to the case of one detainee, Salim Hamdan, but the court’s ruling has widespread implications for how similar cases will be handled in the future. From the article:

“We conclude that the military commission convened to try (Salim Ahmed) Hamdan lacks power to proceed because its structure and procedures violate” the international agreement that covers treatment of prisoners of war, as well as U.S. military laws, Justice John Paul Stevens wrote for the court majority in the 5-3 decision.

Earlier this month, Bush said that he wants to get rid of the Gitmo, but Washington bigwigs were reportedly waiting to see the outcome of this case. Now that it’s here, is it possible that we might begin to see some positive reform? Stay tuned.

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